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One of the best bird photos of the year shows an eagle and a fox fighting over a rabbit in mid-air

INSIDER logoINSIDER 2019-07-17 Tom Murray
  • The 2019 Audubon Photography Award winners have been announced.
  • The annual bird photography competition is run by the National Audubon Society, which is a charity dedicated to protecting birds and their habitats.
  • This year featured a very striking honorable mention that captured an eagle and a fox fighting over a rabbit in mid-air.
  • The stunning photo was captured by Kevin Ebi in San Juan Island National Historical Park, Washington.
  • He said: "The eagle snagged the fox and rabbit, carrying both 20 feet off the ground."
  • Scroll down to see Ebi's photo as well as the other winners of this year's competition.
  • Visit INSIDER's homepage for more stories.

The 2019 Audubon Photography Award winners have just been announced, and there are some pretty striking images.

For the last decade, the National Audubon Society - which is a non-profit environmental organization dedicated to protecting birds - has run a bird photography competition with a $5,000 prize for the winner.

Some of the best bird photography of the year—a collection of the 2019 winners and runners-up (The Atlantic) 

Read more: A flock of drunk birds is terrorizing a small town in Minnesota - but police say they'll sober up soon

This year, 2,253 entrants from all 50 US states, Washington D.C. and 10 Canadian provinces competed for the top spot. The society also introduced two new categories to the competition: the Plants for Birds Prize and the Fisher Prize.

The Plants for Birds Prize was for those photos featuring birds and plants native to the area the photo was taken, while the Fisher Prize was awarded to the photograph depicting the most creative approach to bird photography across all divisions.

The Grand Prize this year went to Kathrin Swoboda who captured this red-winged blackbird producing "smoke rings" in Alexandria, Virginia as it sang one cold morning.

a bird sitting on a branch © Kathrin Swoboda / Audubon Photography Awards

However, arguably the most dramatic shot of the competition only earned an honorable mention this year. This photo of a bald eagle battling mid-air with a juvenile fox over a rabbit was taken by Kevin Ebi in San Juan Island National Historical Park, Washington.

a bird flying over a field © Kevin Ebi / Audubon Photography Awards

"I had spent the day photographing foxes and was panning with this kit running with its prey when an unmistakable cry made me look up," Ebi said of the shot.

"I just knew the eagle racing our way was after the fox's rabbit.

"I expected to have only a split second to capture the theft in one explosive frame; instead the eagle snagged the fox and rabbit, carrying both 20 feet off the ground. After eight seconds it dropped the fox, seemingly unharmed, and flew away with its stolen dinner."

According to Audubon: "Bald Eagles eat pretty much anything they want to. Their penchant for dining on carrion may seem less than regal, but they are also powerful predators and pirates. They capture a wide variety of fish, mammals, and birds, and don't hesitate to steal others' prey."

Below are the other winners from this year's Audubon Photography Awards:

Amateur Winner went to Mariam Kamal for this shot of a white-necked Jacobin in Costa Rica.

© Mariam Kamal / Audubon Photography Awards

Youth Winner was awarded to Sebastian Velasquez for his shot of a preening Horned Puffin taken in Alaska SeaLife Center.

a black and yellow eyes © Sebastian Velasquez/Audubon Photography Awards

Elizabeth Boehm won Professional Winner for her shot of two Greater Sage-Grouse fighting in Wyoming.

a close up of a bird © Elizabeth Boehm / Audubon Photography Awards

Plants for Birds Winner was Michael Schulte who photographed a Hooded Oriole on a California fan palm in San Diego.

a bird sitting on top of a tree © Michael Schulte / Audubon Photography Awards

The first Fisher Prize Winner was Ly Dang for her close-up of a Black-browed Albatross taken in the Falkland Islands.

© Ly Dang / Audubon Photography Awards



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