We would like to say congratulations to our underwater photographer Luis Javier Sandoval for winning the Cold Blooded Animals category at this years Wildlife Photographer of The Year. Luis is based in Mexico, and does a lot of his shooting in and around the Red Sea, Yucatan and Cortez . He is one of the more creative photographers around, especially in the world of underwater, and it is great to see his work being rewarded.
This image was taken in the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico. "The turtles are so used to seeing people in the water that they think we're just part of the environment" says Luis, which means he has been able to get to know individuals, recognising them from the markings on their faces. "This metre-long female, grazing on seagrass, took no notice of me, apart from glancing up briefly". Recently, Luis has noticed what he suspects may be a new threat: at certain times of the year, a yellowish alga covers some of the seagrass. The suspicion is that the algal growth is the result of sewage from the resort, which has already affected the coral. What is clear is that the turtles avoid eating it.
Nikon D7000 + 10-17mm Tokina fisheye lens at 17mm; 1/125 sec at f10; ISO 100; Sea & Sea YS-120 DUO strobes; Aquatica housing + TLC Arm Set.
Luis has a range of outstanding photography in our collection, below are just a couple of examples. Check out some more of his stunning images in this lightbox:
4299-1449 Cormorant (Phalacrocorax sp.) hunting, Sea of Cortez
4299-1202 Green Sea Turtle (Chelonia mydas) at Cancun Underwater Museum
4299-1160 Yellow Tube sponge (Aplysina fistularis), Yucatan Peninsula
4299-1352 Brown booby (Sula leucogaster), Sea of Cortez
4299-1377 Whale shark (Rhincodon typus) feeding, Mexico