ON THE Danube delta in Romania, two white-tailed eagles fight over a kill. Frozen in time, it is a remarkable snapshot of avian life that was over in a moment and would otherwise have been lost on the wind.
Yet it did not take David Attenborough or a professional TV crew to capture it for the hereafter. Like all these pictures, it was the work of a lone enthusiast. Most have day jobs and all were shooting with equipment that can be had on the high street.
Their work is being shown publicly by the Society of International Nature and Wildlife Photographers, organisers of an Animals in Action competition.
John Hunt, from The Weald in Kent, took the winning picture of the eagles, and said the trick to successful wildlife photography lay simply in trying to anticipate what the animals would do next.
“John’s image captured the theme of the competition perfectly,” said Phil Jones, the society’s chief executive, who helped judge the 430 entries.
In second place was Elizabeth Howell from New South Wales, Australia, with her shot of a fruit bat, sometimes called a flying fox, skimming low over the water.
American Cindy Kassab was highly commended for a stunning shot of a hummingbird and an insect in Costa Rica. She said: “It was in the cloud forest there. I was practising taking hummingbird photos using flash.
“You don’t always know what you get and I didn’t realise the insect was in the photo at first.”
Software engineer Alex Geifman, 43, from Israel, was behind the lens for the remarkable portrait of a three month old fox in a small forest in Jerusalem.
He said his secret was to “find a den and wait - late spring or early summertime when fox cubs get out of dens and start wandering around”.
Balox Berhati Nyaman, from Borneo, Indonesia, was highly commended for his shot of a fly carrying a piece of a leaf. Mario Fiorucci, from Argentina, received a similar accolade for a Kiskadee bird perched on a log with a fish about to be dinner.
And Kutub Uddin from Bognor Regis in Sussex was commended for a picture of a “laughing” red eyed tree frog.