The heat is on as the days start to lengthen, which can mean only one thing â€“ there is not much time to enter photos in the winter heat of the WWT photography competition.Â Following on from the success of the autumn heat which received an influx of over 2,500 online entries and a staggering 12,800 votes in the Peopleâ€™s Choice category, the next season has much to live up to.Â WWT Welney is calling on all nature lovers and photographers to submit their most prized pictures of what winter at this amazing wetlands site means to them, before 29 February 2012 when the winter heat will close.
Winter brings such a lot of activity to the reserve at WWT Welney and can provide some spectacular conditions for photography on those cold but sunny winter days.Â Frozen water in the fens can produce serene views and unusual antics such as swans gliding down to land on unfamiliar textures and ducks skidding after grain at the feeds.
Our autumn heat winners had all been announced except the peopleâ€™s choice category for which voting ran until 31 December 2011.Â The photograph which captured peopleâ€™s imaginations the most was a black and white image called â€˜the witchesâ€™ cornerâ€™ by Hayley Wincott, winner also of the people and wildlife category in the same heat.Â Her image of fungi at WWT Welney captured in a unique way managed to attract 294 votes to beat the competition.Â All the regional winners for each of the four seasonal heats will go through to the national finals to be held in autumn 2012.
Whilst photographs entered into all the other categories much have been taken at one
of WWTâ€™s nine wetland wildlife centres across the UK,Â the World Wetlands category invites entries taken of wetlands large or small, good or bad, from all over the world. These can range from rivers in Rwanda, lakes in Lagos to creeks in Colorado, or even one of the most extreme wetlands in the world, Antarctica. A shortlist will be chosen from this category for each seasonal heat to go on to the national finals.
Finally, to be in with the chance of winning the grand prize of the trip to Antarctica,
entrants must submit at least three or more photographs in at least two or more
seasonal heats. If this criteria is met, the entrantâ€™s â€˜portfolioâ€™ will be automatically entered into the Portfolio Photographer of the Year category. At the national finals, each portfolio photographerâ€™s three best photographs (as shortlisted by the judges) will be considered with the winner receiving the Portfolio Photographer of the Year Award and the grand prize of a 12-day fully inclusive trip to Antarctica, courtesy of Exodus in partnership with Quark Expeditions.
The competition is being held in association with Canon, in celebration of the Scott Antarctic Expedition Centenary, and offers an amazing Â£50,000 worth of fantastic prizes for the national winners, including a grand prize for the Portfolio Photographer category of a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Antarctica courtesy of Exodus in partnership with Quark Expeditions. Â Visit www.wwt.org.uk/photo for full details.
For more information, or to enter the competition, visit www.wwt.org.uk/photo. For more information on WWT Welney and the centreâ€™s events visit www.wwt.org.uk/welney.