Behind the Shot: On this wintry January evening, a friend called me to say he’d spotted whales along the shore. I drove down to a nearby bluff and was mesmerized to see them so close. Then I looked over and was stunned to see nearly a thousand gulls on a long, narrow sandbar. Their colorful beaks and feet glowed from the low light of the sun. Moments after the sun went down, the temperature dropped. The sky darkened, the birds began to fly home, and I said goodnight.
“This year nearly 1,800 photographers from across the United States and Canada submitted more than 6,000 images to the 11th annual Audubon Photography Awards. Our expert judging panel had the difficult task of choosing just six winners and four honorable mentions from the pool, but with so many awe-inspiring submissions, we always enjoy picking some favorites that didn't make the final cut.
As usual, we've selected 100 additional photographs, shown here in no particular order. During this year of collective tragedy and canceled plans, we are especially grateful to share a gallery that displays even a small slice of global birdlife in all of its stunning and joyous variety, from acrobatic Ospreys to hungry hummingbirds to busy woodpeckers.”