A stark photo of life and death has won the Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year competition for 2022.
Ashlee Jansen was crowned the overall winner for her photo of a shark circling the carcass of a young whale and took home a prize of AU$10,000 ($11,690).
Entitled Nature’s Prey, it was shot in Coral Bay, Western Australia, and underlines the brutal nature of the planet’s ecosystem.
“Tour boats had been watching the young whale for days as it slowly moved through the bay, appearing sicker and slower with more shark bites over its body day after day,” explains Jansen.
Jansen’s friends spotted an oil slick on the surface caused by the fallen cetacean and the photographer went out to explore.
“I rushed out to their location and jumped in the water to find the skeleton of the young humpback whale laying still on the ocean floor. Surrounding the bare bones were several different species of well-fed sharks,” she says.
The Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year competition, formerly ANZANG, is produced by the South Australian Museum.
It is open to all photographers of all ages, skill levels, and nationalities.
The competition is exhibited at the South Australian Museum until October 30. Tickets are available here.
For more, visits the competition’s website.