Picture Of Mice Fighting At London Underground Wins Wildlife Photo Of The Year
As the title of the award suggests, the winner was picked by the public, receiving 28,000 votes and staving off competition from 24 other shortlisted photos, which were whittled down from 48,000 entries.
The action shot - named Station Squabble - was snapped by Sam Rowley, from Bristol, UK.
While you could reasonably assume it received the most votes because it's kind of funny seeing a mouse do a judo chop, the director of the Natural History Museum, Michael Dixon, hopes the photograph does more than just give us a little giggle.
According to The Evening Standard, he said: "Sam's image provides a fascinating glimpse into how wildlife functions in a human-dominated environment. The mice's behaviour is sculpted by our daily routine, the transport we use and the food we discard.
"This image reminds us that while we may wander past it every day, humans are inherently intertwined with the nature that is on our doorstep - I hope it inspires people to think about and value this relationship more."
If you're wondering how Sam managed to capture such a great shot, well that's simple - he just said 'cheese'.
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OK, no he didn't, forgive me - here's an explanation of his modus operandi on the Natural History Museum website: "Sam discovered the best way to photograph the mice inhabiting London's Underground was to lie on the platform and wait.
"He only saw them fight over scraps of food dropped by passengers a few times, possibly because it is so abundant. This fight lasted a split second, before one grabbed a crumb and they went their separate ways."
Other notable contenders included a polar bear playing with her cubs in Canada, a leopard lounging on its side in Kenya and a bunch of near-invisible reindeer in the snow in Norway, to name but a few.
Bao - who was born and raised in the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau area in China - captured the rare shot after staking out an alpine meadow for several hours. Eventually though he got the ultimate reward, capturing the precise moment in which a female fox pounced on an unsuspecting marmot in a bid to feed her three cubs.
Bao named the shot The Moment - presumably concluding it was a little more concise and artistic than The Moment a Tibetan Fox Scares The S*** Out of a Marmot.
Featured Image Credit: Wildlife Photographer of the Year/Sam Rowley
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