National Geographic's Nature Photographer of the Year 2016

The picture above by G. Lecoeur, entitled Sardine Run, was selected as the Grand Prize winner in National Geographic's Nature Photographer of the Year contest. It was taken off Port Saint John’s in South Africa. He says,

I captured this image during the migration of the sardines along the wild coast of South Africa. Natural predation, sardines are preyed upon by cape gannet birds and common dolphins. The hunt begins with common dolphins that have developed special hunting techniques. With remarkable eyesight, the gannets follow the dolphins before diving in a free fall from 30 to 40 meters high, piercing the surface of the water head first at a speed of 80km/h to get their fill of sardines.

Sardine Run was also the winner of the Action category. See more of Lecoeur's photographs in his gallery. 

Dragging You Deep Into the Woods! is the winner in the Animal Portrait category. This photo is by varun aditya, taken in Amboli, Maharashtra, India.

First place winner in the Landscape category is Struggle of Life by Jacob Kaptein, taken in Leuvenum, Gelderland, Netherlands. See all the winners in these and the Action and Environmental categories, as well as the awesome photographs that came in second and third in each category, plus honorable mentions, at NatGeo. All winning photographs are available as wallpapers, too! -via Boing Boing

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