Moment of attack a winner

Jessica CuthbertAlbany Advertiser
The winning photo, Predatory Pursuit.
Camera IconThe winning photo, Predatory Pursuit. Credit: Justin Gilligan

Stunning photographs capturing nature are on display in a special exhibition in Albany.

The 2017 Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year collection is now on display at the Museum of the Great Southern.

The range of photographs includes a visually striking image of a crowd of spider crabs and a predatory Maori octopus which is the overall winner of the annual competition run by the South Australian Museum.

Predatory Pursuit, by Justin Gilligan from New South Wales, captures the exact moment the octopus was selecting its prey at Mercury Passage between Maria Island and mainland Tasmania.

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“I was out diving on a project with Professor Craig Johnson from the University of Tasmania when suddenly a large aggregation of spider crabs came out of nowhere,” he said.

“Capturing this shot was a case of being in the right place at the right time and the unexpected encounter really reinforced how little we know about Australia’s temperate marine environment.”

South Australian Museum director Brian Oldman said Gilligan’s photograph had been judged the winning entry among 2174 photographs.

“The Australian Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year competition continues to grow, with 2017 seeing a record number of entries,” Mr Oldman said.

“We’re proud to produce such an exciting exhibition, with each image highlighting the role museums play in educating people about nature.”

Albany Pitcher Plant.
Camera IconAlbany Pitcher Plant. Credit: Bill McClurg

Albany photographer Bill McClurg was a finalist in the botanical category for his photo Albany Pitcher Plant.

McClurg said photography enriched his experience of the natural world.

“It slows me down and allows me to notice the smaller details I would otherwise miss,” he said.

The exhibition will be on display until Monday, April 30.

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