By Anja Samy
The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards has just announced the 40 Finalists for 2019 – and they’re everything you could hope for!
Founded by photographers and passionate conservationists, Paul Joynson-Hicks and Tom Sullam, the global competition is a refreshing take on the often grandiose and serious world of wildlife photography.
Joynson-Hicks said: “Every year we do this competition, it gets more and more exciting seeing how people visualise the funny sides of wildlife in the wild. And each year we see a wider variety of species doing funny things, whether it’s a very naughty penguin (which had my kids rolling around the floor in hysterics) or dancing lions, a chillin’ chimp or even bee-eaters having a shouting match – they’re hysterical!”
The founders credit their inspiration for the awards to two main factors: “Firstly, a need for a photography competition that was light hearted, upbeat, possibly unpretentious and mainly about wildlife doing funny things. […] Secondly, and way more importantly, this competition is about conservation.”
In association with its main partner, The Born Free Foundation, the competition uses this showcase of nature at its most weird and wonderful to engage the public with the message that we must act in order to preserve our planet.
The competition’s website includes a number of easily accessible ways to get involved in ‘conservation at home’.
“This is super easy for everyone to do. For example; don’t buy products which have palm oil, because the palm oil plantations are destroying rainforests. Try and avoid un-recyclable products and one-use plastics/packaging.”
“Each time you flush the loo we send approx. 20 litres of water down the drain – seriously, it’s crazy. So..have shorter showers, water your garden less and stop flushing the loo every single time. This would save billions of litres of fresh water that could support our environment as well as supply homes and food for a global plethora of wildlife.”
“For example, encourage your friends and family about some of the simple things we have mentioned above, talk about it in social media, in the pub, at work. Does your work place subscribe to some good environmental practices? Find really awesome conservation organisations and engage with them on email, or social media. Email or write to your local government representative, maybe an MP, a House of Rep, a councillor and find out what they are doing to help the wildlife around the world. Hold your elected representatives accountable. You have a voice, we all do, use it and don’t be afraid.”
This year’s entries will be judged by a panel that includes wildlife TV presenter and writer Kate Humble and comedian Hugh Dennis with the winners announced on 13th November.
The competitions includes a People’s Choice Award, sponsored by Affinity Photo: for more details on how to vote and to see the rest of the incredible photos, go to The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards website.
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