Hilarious Early Entries From the 2021 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards

Young lion in the Serengeti National Park, Tanzania looking like they're laughing

“ROFL” by Giovanni Querzani (Italy). Young lion (Serengeti National Park, Tanzania).
“A young lion in the Serengeti National Park, Tanzania, who apparently is laughing at my photography skills.”

The Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards are back to show the lighter side of the animal kingdom. This annual competition, now in its seventh year, is once again on the hunt for 2021's funniest animal images. While entries are being accepted until June 30, the organizers have released some of the images from this year that have already tickled their funny bones.

Top entries include a young lion who appears to be rolling on the ground with laughter, a bold prairie dog who scared a bald eagle, and a grumpy starling whose facial expression is a total mood. Amateur and professional photographers from around the globe have already submitted thousands of entries and if this preview is any indication, the competition is stiff.

“We hope people take a peek of these latest images and share them with any friends or family they think might have the winning shot,” said Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards co-founder Tom Sullam. “Last year, our winning picture of a grumpy-looking turtle swearing at the camera took the world by storm. People love to see these beautiful creatures in these silly situations—it reminds us that we’re not too dissimilar.”

The competition is free to enter and photographers can submit up to 10 photographs across six different categories including land, air, portfolio, underwater, and video. Young photographers are also welcome in a special category for those that are 16 and under.

What's at stake? Prizes include a once-in-a-lifetime safari in the Maasai Mara in Kenya, a subscription to Affinity Photo, a camera bag from ThinkTank, and, of course, the prestigious title of 2021 Comedy Wildlife Photographer of the Year. As always, the awards also have a conservation component. This year the competition is supporting Save Wild Orangutans by donating 10% of its total net revenue to the charity. The initiative safeguards wild orangutans in and around Gunung Palung National Park, Borneo.

The 2021 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards are heating up. Take a look at some early entries.

Prairie Dog Suprising a Bald Eagle

“Bald Eagle Gets a Surprise” by Arthur Trevino (USA). Bald Eagle & Prairie Dog (Hygiene, CO)
“When this Bald Eagle missed on its attempt to grab this prairie dog, the prairie dog jumped towards the eagle and startled it long enough to escape to a nearby burrow. A real David vs Goliath story!”

Two Western Grey Kangaroos Fighting

“Missed!” by Lea Scaddan (Australia). Western Grey Kangaroo (Perth, Australia).
“Two Western Grey Kangaroos were fighting and one missed kicking him in the stomach.)

Raccoon Family Sticking Their Heads Out of Hole in a Tree

“Quarantine Life” by Kevin Biskaborn (Canada). Raccoon (South Western Ontario, Canada).
“Isolated inside with your family eager to get out and explore the world? These eastern raccoon kits are too. Just when you think there's no more room in the tree hollow, mother raccoon appears and displays just how compact the space is. The babies clambered all over their mom and each another, struggling to take a look at the exact same time. This photo was taken in Southwestern Ontario, Canada. After exploring a particular area with numerous tree hallows, I identified it as a hot spot for raccoon families. Since raccoons will move from den to den, often not spending more than one night at a time in a particular den, locating an area with numerous options is key to locating the animals. I stumbled across this family and immediately worked on leveling the camera with the hole to prevent an upward angle. When the camera and tripod were ready, the baby raccoons were extremely curious (and cooperative), sticking their heads out for a closer look!”

Angry Looking Pied Starling

“Monday Morning Mood” by Andrew Mayes (South Africa). Pied Starling (Rietvlei Nature Reserve, South Africa)
“I took this shot while photographing a group of Pied starlings perched in a tree at the Rietvlei Nature Reserve in South Africa. It perfectly sums up my mood on most Monday mornings.”

Photographers have until June 30 to submit their entries to this year's contest.

Boxfish in Curacao

“Sweet lips are for kissing” by Philipp Stahr (Germany). Boxfish (Curaçao, Dutch Caribbean).
“This picture was taken at Curaçao, Dutch Caribbean. Usually box fishes are difficult to take pictures of, since they do not have a problem of a diver coming close, but if you show interest, they always turn the back and not the face to you. That's why I tried to swim 0.5m above the fish and showing no interest at all to him. The same time I had my camera not in front of me, but below at my chest pointing to the bottom. When the right moment had come, I turned the camera 90 degrees to the front and just point and shoot, hoping to have the fish in focus. Never expected to have its beautiful lips that close!”

Baby and Mother Hippo in Malawi

“Cranky hippo” by Rohin Bakshi (India). Hippo (Vwaza Game Reserve, Malawi).
“The baby hippo wanted his mother's attention, but it seems he wasn't getting any.”

Penguins Surfing Waves in the Falklands

“Happy” by Tom Svensson (Sweden). Penguin (Falklands).
“These penguins was surfing on the waves on to land and looked so happy each time.”

Amazon Kingfisher with Fish in Its Mouth

“Houston—we've got a problem!” by Txema Garcia Laseca (Palma, Spain). Amazon Kingfisher (Pantanal, Brazil).
“This fish is astonished when has been trapped for a fisher bird.”

Yellow Bittern Walking Across Lotus Stalks

“Yoga Bittern” by KT Wong (Singapore). Yellow Bittern (Satay By The Bay, Singapore).
“A Yellow Bittern was trying very hard to get into a comfortable hunting position. I got this shot when it was between two stalks of lotus flower.”

Young Springbok in Midair

“Yay – It's Friday!” by Lucy Beveridge (Spain). Springbok (Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park, South Africa).
“A young springbok, all ears and spindly legs, caught in midair while pronking as the sun started to rise over the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park. There’s not much information on why the Springbok pronk but some theories suggest it is a way of showing fitness and strength to ward off predators and attract mates. It has also been said that this small, dainty and largely unappreciated antelope also pronks out of excitement, jumping for joy!”

Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards: WebsiteFacebook | Instagram

My Modern Met granted permission to feature photos by the Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards.

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Hilarious Winners of Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards 2020 Announced

Hilarious Finalists of the 2020 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards

40 Funny Finalists from the 2019 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards

Adorably Hilarious Winners of the 2019 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards

Jessica Stewart

Jessica Stewart is a Staff Editor and Digital Media Specialist for My Modern Met, as well as a curator and art historian. Since 2020, she is also one of the co-hosts of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. She earned her MA in Renaissance Studies from University College London and now lives in Rome, Italy. She cultivated expertise in street art which led to the purchase of her photographic archive by the Treccani Italian Encyclopedia in 2014. When she’s not spending time with her three dogs, she also manages the studio of a successful street artist. In 2013, she authored the book 'Street Art Stories Roma' and most recently contributed to 'Crossroads: A Glimpse Into the Life of Alice Pasquini'. You can follow her adventures online at @romephotoblog.
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