Humpback whale (Megaptera novaeangliae) lunging during cooperative feeding using a bubble net, Tenakee Inlet, Southeast Alaska, USA. Winner of the Mammal Behaviour Category in the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition 2002.
This was the photo that won the Mammal Behavior Category in the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition in 2002. It wasn’t until after I attended the award ceremony at the Natural History Museum that I discovered that many of the judges were unhappy that it wasn’t awarded the title of the overall winner of the competition, and I subsequently discovered that that was the general public consensus as well. It was unfortunate that the controversy that surrounded the overall winner that year soured such a proud moment in my photographic career. I was contacted a few years later by the new head of the judging panel, Mark Carwardine, to ask for any guidelines for submitting a winning photo, because he felt that my photo was the best entry that year. C’est la vie !
But the moment that can never be diminished or tainted was the moment that I captured the image. I was photographing a bubble net feeding group very near the community of Tenakee Springs, which can be seen to the left of the whale. They came up behind me and I can clearly remember zooming my lens back so that I could fit the entire throat of the whale into the photo, and fortunately I was just able to do that or else it might not have been a perfect award-winning photo.
- Duncan Murrell
- Image Size
- 3000x1989 / 4.3MB
- Contained in galleries
- Humpback Whales - Bubble Net Feeding