Home Lifestyle Wildlife in North Carolina 2023-24 photo competition now open

Wildlife in North Carolina 2023-24 photo competition now open

Two hooded merganser drakes bid for the attention of a single female by performing a number of displays, such as raising their white head crests, head-shaking, “head-throwing,” head-pumping and uttering frog-like croaks. Cover of WINC July/Aug 2022 issue, Lake Betz mergansers, Jian Zheng, Cary.

RALEIGH — The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission is accepting entries to its 19th annual Wildlife in North Carolina Photo Competition. Entries will be accepted until Jan. 31, 2024.

The contest is open to amateur and professional photographers of all ages, except for employees of the Wildlife Commission and their immediate families (children, siblings and spouses).

Adult competition entrants must be current magazine subscribers. Photographers in the two youth categories (13-17 years old and 12 and under) may enter without a subscription.

Only digital entries in JPEG format, no larger than 2 MB, will be considered — no slides, negatives or prints will be accepted. Photographs must have been taken in North Carolina on Sept. 15, 2019 or later.

Entrants may submit a maximum of two photos per category. The competition categories are:

  • Animal Behavior
  • Birds
  • Invertebrates
  • Mammals
  • Outdoor Recreation
  • Reptiles and Amphibians
  • Wild Landscapes
  • Wild Plants and Fungi
  • Youth Photographer, 13-17: Any of the above subjects, shot by children ages 13-17.
  • Youth Photographer, 12 and under: Any of the above subjects, shot by children 12 and younger.

Photos of captive native animals are allowed, but photos of animals that are both captive and non-native to North Carolina will not be accepted. No pets or domestic animals will be accepted, except animals participating with people in an outdoor activity, such as hunting dogs or horses with riders.​


Entries will be judged by a panel comprising staff from the Wildlife Commission and professional wildlife photographers. The grand prize winner’s photo will be published on the cover of the July/August 2024 issue of Wildlife in North Carolina, and the winner will receive a cash prize of $200. All winning photos will be published in the July/August 2024 issue. Cash prizes of $100, $75 and $50 will be awarded to the first, second and third place photographers, respectively, in each category.

Additional details about the contest and past winning photos are available at ncwildlife.org/contest.

Wildlife in North Carolina is published bimonthly by the Wildlife Commission in both print and electronic formats. Subscribers to the magazine enjoy exceptional color photography and articles on hunting, fishing, natural areas, wildlife research and the state’s environment in every issue. Annual subscriptions to the printed version of the magazine are $12. A digital subscription is $10; a combination digital/print subscription is $15.

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