Schoolboy’s bee snap buzzes to first place in wildlife photography competition
It is an extraordinary picture that has all the hallmarks of a professional wildlife photographer.
But, remarkably, this crystal clear shot of a bumble bee hovering beside a salvia flower was taken by a 13-year-old boy in his back garden.
Cameron Smith has now won a national photography competition after the judges were impressed by his technical ability in the picture, which he titled ‘Buzzing Along’.
‘I spotted this bee buzzing around a plant and I decided to try and take a picture of it. It took me a lot of attempts before I got the picture I wanted to get,’ said the teenager, from Wetheringsett, Suffolk.
‘I chose this photo because the bee was in flight and the photo was sharp.’
One of the judges of the Suffolk Wildlife Trust competition, Bill Baston, said the picture was a ‘remarkable achievement for a 13-year-old.’
‘The colourful, curved flower sweeps across the image and points towards the hovering bee, which is razor-sharp and frozen in mid-air, framed in the dark gap between two out-of-focus flowers in the background, so that it stands out even more,’ he added.
David Hermon, from Felixstowe, managed to capture a spectacular image of a peregrine falcon returning its nest with freshly caught prey.
The bird can even be seen calling to its hungry and impatient brood.
Another photo by amateur Wayne Geater, from Claydon, shows a rutting red deer, while a shocked and soggy-looking water vole can be seen staring at the camera in a picture by Matt Fiddler.
A fox hurries through the snow apparently oblivious to some fat and tasty-looking ducks in a second picture by David Hermon.
A third one from David, his ‘mini-beast tornado’, shows a whirling storm of gnats.
‘Gnats fly round like a tornado but usually it’s hard to capture them on camera,’ he said.
‘I slowed down the shutter speed so it shows them doing several wing beats.’
The competition has been running for 11 years and this year it has attracted a record number of submissions
‘The aim is to find amateur photographers who best capture the beauty and significance of our local wildlife and to help them bring their work to a wide audience’ said Audrey Boyle, of The Suffolk Wildlife Trust’