Preventing water crises
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Preventing water crises

Majestic images from under the water

A host of sharks in a frenzy in the ocean, a seal playing underwater, a whale and a diver dancing, a turtle caught in a fishing net and the portrait of a rainbow-coloured ray are among of the winners of the Underwater Photographer of the Year 2019 contest.

The Underwater Photographer of the Year contest is in its fourth year in 2019. The winning images of the contest offer glimpses into the astonishing, magical world below the waterline that is unknown to many people. The contest had 14 categories including ‘Wide Angle’, ‘Macro’, ‘Portrait’ and ‘Behaviour’.

The photos present various aspects of life under water: some images show the unlikely creatures hidden in the depths, others focus on majestic animals such as whales or seals cavorting underwater. Some of the photos carry heartbreaking message: Eduardo Acevedo’s photo shows a turtle trying to get free of a plastic fishing net. The picture earned Acevedo the prize of Marine Conservation Photographer of the Year.

The photo’s message is strong: we must do more to protect the denizens of the oceans – for instance by introducing more sustainable fishing practices and reducing the consumption of
single-use plastics.

This year, the main prize went to Richard Barnden for his photo entitled The Gauntlet, an action-packed shot of sharks in a feeding frenzy. The photographer captured the image in an extraordinary setting: the photo was taken at the Fakarava South Pass in French Polynesia, where the photographer shared the water with about 700 sharks that patrol the mouth of the channel by day and hunt at night.

“The Gauntlet” / Underwater Photographer of the Year 2019 / © Richard Barnden/UPY2019 Photo: underwaterphotographeroftheyear.com
“Caretta Caretta Turtle” / Marine Conservation Photographer of the Year 2019 / © Eduardo Acevedo/UPY2019 Photo: underwaterphotographeroftheyear.com
“Gentle Giants” / winner, Wide Angle category / © François Baelen/UPY2019 Photo: underwaterphotographeroftheyear.com
“Playtime?” / winner, British Waters Compact category / © Martin Edser/UPY2019 Photo: underwaterphotographeroftheyear.com
“Fly High and Smile” / winner, Portrait category / © Nicholas Samaras/UPY2019 Photo: underwaterphotographeroftheyear.com
Further information: My Modern Met

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