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Incredible recording of jumping wildebeest wins the top prize in the competition for nature photography

This incredible shot of jumping wildebeest during the Great Migration has won a British snapper grand prize at an international wildlife photography contest.

Andy Howe’s photo won the Society of International Nature and Wildlife Photographers Nature in Action competition.

Other award-winning and highly acclaimed snaps include eagles scribbling over a fox carcass in Norway, a cheetah about to jump on a baby gazelle, and a hare jumping through a field in Cambridgeshire.

Andy, from Suffolk, said of his winning shot: ‘The statue was taken during the Great Migration at Kenya’s Masai Mara Reserve at a crossroads known as the Cup-de-sac.

This incredible shot of a leaping wildebeest during the Great Migration has won a British snapper grand prize at an international wildlife photography contest

This incredible shot of a leaping wildebeest during the Great Migration has won a British snapper grand prize at an international wildlife photography contest

Other runners-up and critically acclaimed snaps include this beautiful statue of eagles scraping over a fox carcass in Norway by Norwegian photographer Bjoern Stuedal

Other runners-up and critically acclaimed snaps include this beautiful statue of eagles scraping over a fox carcass in Norway by Norwegian photographer Bjoern Stuedal

Other runners-up and critically acclaimed snaps include this beautiful statue of eagles scraping over a fox carcass in Norway by Norwegian photographer Bjoern Stuedal

The cruelty of nature is also highlighted in a highly acclaimed photograph by Norwegian photographer Bjoern Stuedal. A cheetah looks on almost casually as it approaches a small baby gazelle, whose face depicts terror

The cruelty of nature is also highlighted in a highly acclaimed photograph by Norwegian photographer Bjoern Stuedal. A cheetah looks on almost casually as it approaches a small baby gazelle, whose face depicts terror

The cruelty of nature is also highlighted in a highly acclaimed photograph by Norwegian photographer Bjoern Stuedal. A cheetah looks on almost casually as it approaches a small baby gazelle, whose face depicts terror

The masses of wildebeest, zebras and topis gather in their thousands and create a super herd on the banks of the Mara River, waiting and building their courage, energy and motivation.

“It seems like they will never do it, as if this is too great a barrier to cross.

“A brave animal makes the first move, the first jump. Desperately, they flow like lemmings into the crocodile-infested river, leaping, bleating, shouting a crescendo of adrenaline and instinct. ‘

And those left behind become prey too, as another photo of him highly acclaimed shows a wildebeest desperately trying to shake off a lion wrapped around his neck.

The lioness had already committed another murder when she launched this attack, as up to 10,000 animals crossed the river.

Andy said, “With her natural instincts in overdrive, the temptation was too great.

Closer to home, this stunning shot of a running hare in Cambridgeshire also earned Kevin Pigney the highly acclaimed award

Closer to home, this stunning shot of a running hare in Cambridgeshire also earned Kevin Pigney the highly acclaimed award

Closer to home, this stunning shot of a running hare in Cambridgeshire also earned Kevin Pigney the highly acclaimed award

Another photo of Paul Smith, two hops sharing food in the Hortobagy National Park in Hungary, was highly praised

Another photo of Paul Smith, two hops sharing food in the Hortobagy National Park in Hungary, was highly praised

Another photo of Paul Smith, two hops sharing food in the Hortobagy National Park in Hungary, was highly praised

“She followed all the animals running towards her and after maybe 15 Wildebeest teased her running so close to her, she finally let fly and took another one right in front of me and my lens.”

The cruelty of nature is also highlighted in a highly acclaimed photograph by Norwegian photographer Bjoern Stuedal.

A cheetah watches almost casually as he approaches a small baby gazelle, whose face is a depiction of terror.

Bjoern said: ‘I was traveling in the Masai Mara in Kenya. One day we saw three cheetahs – a mother with two children – on the hunt, hunting a young Thomson’s gazelle.

“The gazelle ran straight for us, trying desperately to escape, but was chased and killed.”

Overall number two was Lewis McCudden of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides, with his photo of a roaring deer that he had followed for two days

Overall number two was Lewis McCudden of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides, with his photo of a roaring deer that he had followed for two days

Overall number two was Lewis McCudden of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides, with his photo of a roaring deer that he had followed for two days

And those left behind also become prey, like another photo of Andy that was highly praised, shows a wildebeest trying desperately to shake off a lion wrapped around his neck

And those left behind also become prey, like another photo of Andy that was highly praised, shows a wildebeest trying desperately to shake off a lion wrapped around his neck

And those left behind also become prey, like another photo of Andy that was highly praised, shows a wildebeest trying desperately to shake off a lion wrapped around his neck

Birds have always been a hot topic and Paul Smith finished third in the league with his shot of a kingfisher with a rudder fish caught on the Alde River in Suffolk

Birds have always been a hot topic and Paul Smith finished third in the league with his shot of a kingfisher with a rudder fish caught on the Alde River in Suffolk

Birds have always been a hot topic and Paul Smith finished third in the league with his shot of a kingfisher with a rudder fish caught on the Alde River in Suffolk

Another shot by Bjoern also shows two eagles in the snow fighting over a fox’s body.

He said, “The photo was taken in Telemark, Norway, in February this year.

‘In the mountainside of the small village of Dalen, in the heart of the Telemark region, I waited for the eagles in a shelter before sunrise.

“Just before sunset they finally came – the first, and then suddenly another approached and chased the first away.”

Closer to home, Kevin Pigney received praise for a beautiful photo of a running hare in Cambridgeshire.

Kevin said, “My passion is wildlife photography, especially brown hares.

“I spent hundreds of hours photographing it and this photo is one of my favorites.

“My method is to lie down and wait for the hare to appear, because stalking is usually fruitless.

“As I lay motionless and completely still, it ran at me at a speed. It was taken on a local farm where the owner kindly allows me to do my photography. ‘

Birds have always been a popular subject, and Paul Smith finished third in the competition with his shot of a kingfisher with a redfish on the Alde River in Suffolk.

Another of his photos, two hops sharing food in the Hortobagy National Park in Hungary, was highly praised.

A photo of a bird drilling a nest from the inside in Bangladesh was also praised.

Snapper Nafis Ameen, 32, told how to wait almost two hours to get the photo in his hometown of Dhaka.

A photo of a bird drilling a nest from the inside in Bangladesh was also praised. Snapper Nafis Ameen, 32, told how to wait almost two hours to take the photo in his hometown of Dhaka

A photo of a bird drilling a nest from the inside in Bangladesh was also praised. Snapper Nafis Ameen, 32, told how to wait almost two hours to take the photo in his hometown of Dhaka

A photo of a bird drilling a nest from the inside in Bangladesh was also praised. Snapper Nafis Ameen, 32, told how to wait almost two hours to take the photo in his hometown of Dhaka

On a different continent, very different birds - two beautiful emperor penguins - were photographed in South Georgia by Nick Dale

On a different continent, very different birds - two beautiful emperor penguins - were photographed in South Georgia by Nick Dale

On a different continent, very different birds – two beautiful emperor penguins – were photographed in South Georgia by Nick Dale

He said: “Every spring I visit the National Botanical Garden in the capital Dhaka to see the different species of birds in the garden.

“I took a walk in the garden when I heard the sound of a Lineated Barbet building its nest.

“I waited at least one to two hours for the perfect shot, because the hole in the tree got bigger.”

On a different continent, a completely different bird, an emperor penguin, was photographed in South Georgia by Nick Dale.

The 52-year-old from London said: ‘A king penguin looks down and wonders what lies on the beach at St Andrew’s Bay, South Georgia: is it an egg to nest on or just a rock to top? to step?

“Another penguin is also watching, and they both have black and orange heads, white breasts with orange patches on the throat, gray backs and flippers, and black feet.”

Overall runner-up was Lewis McCudden of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides, with his photo of a roaring deer that he’d followed for two days.

Lee, 26, said, “It was made in Glen Coe last October. I stayed there for a week to get up close and personal with the rut of red deer.

“I followed this particular deer for a few days. I saw him roar through the valley and warned other deer of its presence and power.

“On my last day, I saw him climb up to the forehead of the hill, with the mountain falls and the rock face as a backdrop. He roared when I clicked on the shot. ‘

Society directors Colin Jones comments on the winning photo: “Andy was chosen as the winner because of the great ‘snapshot’, with the action being the final story and fitting brilliantly into the theme of the competition.”

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