Wiki Loves Earth 2014 winners announced

Wiki Loves Earth, a photo contest of natural monuments, became international for the first time in 2014 and was held in 16 countries. The contest is over now, and after the careful evaluation the international jury is happy to announce the winners

First prize: Carpathian National Park, Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast, Ukraine | by Dmytro Balkhovitin

First prize: Carpathian National Park, Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast, Ukraine | by Dmytro Balkhovitin

Wiki Loves Earth is a photo contest of natural monuments, where participants picture protected areas and upload their photos to Wikimedia Commons. The goal of the project is, on one hand, to capture under a free license as many natural monuments and protected areas as possible, and on the other hand, to contribute to environment protection by raising public awareness.
After years of successful Wiki Loves Monuments organisation there was an idea of a similar contest for natural monuments. The idea of Wiki Loves Earth was born in 2012, and it was implemented for the first time in Ukraine, where the contest was held from 15 April to 15 May 2013.
In 2014, Wiki Loves Earth was joined by 15 other countries from four different continents – Europe, Asia, Africa and America. Most of countries organised the contest from 1 May to 31 May 2014, while some countries extended the contest period till 30 June, and Serbia was the last to finish on 15 July. During the contest, over 70,000 pictures were submitted by more than 3,000 participants.
Similarly to Wiki Loves Monuments, Wiki Loves Earth was organised through numerous national contests, coordinated by local volunteers. The national juries then submitted up to 10 pictures to the international stage of the contest. With 16 participating countries, the international jury had to consider a total of 156 candidate pictures.
The international jury was composed of seven photographers, most of whom were experienced in nature photography: Diego Delso (Spain/Germany), Muhammad Mahdi (Tanzania/India), Julián Monge-Nájera (Costa Rica), Susanne Plank (Austria), Esther Solé (Spain), Oleg Zharii (Ukraine) and Wikimedian Wikimk (Macedonia). Their profiles can be found in the jury report. After several weeks of evaluation they have selected the following images:
The first prize goes to the view of Carpathian National Park from Hoverla, Ukraine by Dmytro Balkhovitin. This photo gives an exciting view from the highest point of Ukraine — Hoverla — towards Carpathian National Park, one of the largest in Ukraine. The jury was particularly impressed by the composition of the photo and its lighting with great crepuscular rays.

Second prize: Serra dos Órgãos, State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil | by Carlos Perez Couto

Second prize: Serra dos Órgãos, State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil | by Carlos Perez Couto

The second prize was attributed to the photo of God‘s Finger Rock in the Serra dos Órgãos National Park, Brazil. This image by Carlos Perez Couto depicts the best known rock formation in the park, which is also symbol of Brazilian mountaineering and of the entire state of Rio de Janeiro. Breathtaking landscapes are completed with excellent composition that even reminded to one juror of Chinese paintings.

Third prize: Mukri Nature Park, Rapla County, Estonia | by Janno Loide (Amadvr)

Third prize: Mukri Nature Park, Rapla County, Estonia | by Janno Loide (Amadvr)

An image of Estonia’s Mukri Nature Park by Janno Loide (Amadvr) was awarded the third place. This original almost monochromatic image represents an autumn fog over the marshes of Estonia. In addition, the jury appreciated the good representation of the red colour of the sky together with high level of detail.

The remaining photos receiving the awards are the following:

Fourth prize: Mount Shaan-Kaya, Yalta Natural Reserve, Crimea, Ukraine | by Oleksandr Chernykh (A4ernyh)

Fourth prize: Mount Shaan-Kaya, Yalta Natural Reserve, Crimea, Ukraine | by Oleksandr Chernykh (A4ernyh)

Fifth prize: Mount Krchin, Mavrovo National Park, Republic of Macedonia | by Martin Dimitrievski

Fifth prize: Mount Krchin, Mavrovo National Park, Republic of Macedonia | by Martin Dimitrievski

Sixth prize: Aekingerzand, Drents-Friese Wold National, Netherlands | by Ubrerprutser

Sixth prize: Aekingerzand, Drents-Friese Wold National, Netherlands | by Ubrerprutser

Seventh prize: Novyi Svit Sanctuary, Crimea, Ukraine | by Vitaliy Bashkatov (Vian)

Seventh prize: Novyi Svit Sanctuary, Crimea, Ukraine | by Vitaliy Bashkatov (Vian)

Eighth prize: Zuivskyi Regional Landscape Park, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine | by Vitaliy Bashkatov (Vian)

Eighth prize: Zuivskyi Regional Landscape Park, Donetsk Oblast, Ukraine | by Vitaliy Bashkatov (Vian)

Ninth prize: Haizer, Djurdjura Massif, Bouira Province, Algeria | by Chettouh Nabil

Ninth prize: Haizer, Djurdjura Massif, Bouira Province, Algeria | by Chettouh Nabil

Tenth prize: Aïn Legradj Cascade, Bordj Bou Arréridj Province, Algeria | by Chettouh Nabil

Tenth prize: Aïn Legradj Cascade, Bordj Bou Arréridj Province, Algeria | by Chettouh Nabil

Eleventh prize: Mount Kukul, Carpathian National Park, Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast & Carpathian Biosphere Reserve, Zakarpattia Oblast, Ukraine | by Volodymyr Khirash (Хіраш Володимир)

Eleventh prize: Mount Kukul, Carpathian National Park, Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast & Carpathian Biosphere Reserve, Zakarpattia Oblast, Ukraine | by Volodymyr Khirash (Хіраш Володимир)

Twelfth prize: Nationalpark Kalkalpen, Upper Austria, Austria | by Isiwal

Twelfth prize: Nationalpark Kalkalpen, Upper Austria, Austria | by Isiwal

Thirteenth prize: Pool of Cortalet, Aiguamolls de l‘Empordà, Natural Park, Catalonia, Spain | by Mikipons

Thirteenth prize: Pool of Cortalet, Aiguamolls de l‘Empordà, Natural Park, Catalonia, Spain | by Mikipons | фото Mikipons

Fourteenth prize: Ezumakeeg, Lauwersmeer National Park, Netherlands | by Bayke de Vries (Baykedevries)

Fourteenth prize: Ezumakeeg, Lauwersmeer National Park, Netherlands | by Bayke de Vries (Baykedevries)

Fifteenth prize: Mount Thaletat, Bouira Province, Algeria | by Chettouh Nabil

Fifteenth prize: Mount Thaletat, Bouira Province, Algeria | by Chettouh Nabil

Winners were determined by the 7-person jury. Each participating country could nominate one member to the international jury, although only 5 countries used this right. Two further jury members were added by the international organising team to increase diversity of the jury.
156 nominations were submitted to the international organising team by the national juries of the 16 participating countries. Each country was allowed to submit up to 10 images, but some countries decided to submit less images. Andorra and Spain submitted their images in a double nomination. The jury selected and ranked the photos in several stages by means of a dedicated web tool.
The full report of the international jury, explaining the work of the jury, selection process and presenting the results together with comments of the jury, is available here.
Congratulations to the winners and thank you for everyone who worked on organisation of the contest this year!

Mykola Kozlenko,
Wikimedia Ukraine / WLE International team.

All photographs in this pos are published by their authors under CC BY-SA 3.0. Click the photos for details.

Introducing the International Jury

All 16 participating countries have already announced their national winners (you can look at the gallery of nominated photos), so now it’s time to introduce people who will select the winning photos — the international jury!

The international jury is composed of seven people representing different parts of the world and having different backgrounds. What they have in common is their passion for photography and enthusiasm to select the best photos of natural monuments. Meet our jurors:

  • Diego Delso is a Spanish electrical engineer, amateur photographer for 20 years and a Wikimedian since 2007. He has uploaded over 11,500 pictures to Wikimedia Commons. Almost half of those pictures have been recognized as Quality Images and around 150 pictures as Featured Pictures. He was a jury member of Wiki Loves Monuments in Spain (2012) and Thailand (2014) and part of the international jury in 2013.
  • Muhammad Mahdi is a photographer and an avid contributor to Wikimedia Commons. He was born in Tanzania near the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro and is currently living in Bangalore, India. He has more than a hundred of featured pictures on both English Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons, especially nature shorts. He was a jury member of Wiki Loves Monuments in 2012.
  • Julián Monge-Nájera is a Costa Rican ecologist, scientific editor, educator and photographer. For many years he has acted as scientific adviser for the BBC and the National Geographic Society. He is regional Editor of the United Nations’ Global Environmental Outlook (“GEO Report”) and author or co-author of 20 books published by several Costa Rican universities, Oxford University, the National Biodiversity Institute (INBio) and Tropical Nature Press.
  • Susanne Plank lives in Vienna and loves nature, photography and good looking photos of nature. She is 49 and she is active in Wikipedia and other Wikimedia projects since 2011, both in writing articles and uploading photos. She is an active of Austrian photography community and was a member of pre-jury at various photo contests.
  • Esther Solé is an art historian and photographer from Lleida (Catalonia, Spain) and active contributor to Catalan Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons. She previously served as a Wikipedian in Residence in Lleida’s Museu d’Art Jaume Morera and Barcelona’s Fundació Miró.
  • Oleg Zharii is a professional photographer from Ukraine. Apart of being professor of Mechanics in Kyiv National University, he is an experienced photographer and winner of numerous photo contests. He has authored a book on HDR and panoramic photography, several photo albums and had photo exhibitions in Kyiv, London (UK) and Nairobi (Kenya). He was a jury member of Wiki Loves Earth 2013 and Wiki Loves Monuments 2013 in Ukraine.
  • [[User:Wikimk]] is coming from Macedonia and is interested in photography since the age of 15. He is an active contributor to Macedonian Wikipedia since 2008 and its administrator from 2009. He is one of the founders of Wikimedia Macedonia and was a jury member of Wiki Loves Monuments in Macedonia.
  • Awards ceremony in Ukraine!

    Wiki Loves Earth Ukraine Awards Ceremony took place in Golden Gate (Kyiv) on July 12, 2014.

    416 members took part in Ukrainian part of the contest in 2014 and they uploaded more than 12 thousand photographs of 1324 natural monuments.

    The best photograph was a snapshot from Crimea.

    At the ceremony the winners were awarded in the nominations for the greatest number of natural monuments photographed in each of the regions of Ukraine and the best photos from all regions, as well as participants who photographed the highest number of objects in general in the country, and authors of the ten best photos.

    Finally, we announce TOP-10 the best photos. These ten photographs will represent Ukraine at the international stage of the competition.

    1st place. Demerdji Rocks, Crimea. Ukraine, Vitaliy Bashkatov, CC BY-SA 3.0

    2nd place. Carpathian National Park, Ukraine, Balkhovitin. C BY-SA 3.0

    3rd place. Aktovskyi canyon, Granite-steppe lands of Buh. Sak Anastasia, CC BY-SA 3.0

    Carpathian Biosphere Reserve, Volodymyr Hirash, CC BY-SA 3.0

    Aj-Petri Yayla, Crimea, Oleksandr Chernyh, CC BY-Sa 3.0

    Shatsky National Natural Park, Pavlo Mokrytskiy, CC BY-SA 3.0

    Carpathian National Park, Moahim, CC BY-SA 3.0

    Regional Landscape Park «Zuevskiy», Vitaliy Bashkatov, CC BY-SA 3.0

    Carpathian National Park, Robert-Erik, CC BY-SA 3.0

    Novyi Svit Sanctuary, Vitaliy Bashkatov, CC BY-SA 3.0

     

    Algeria, Germany, Ghana, India and The Netherlands are Closing!

    Today is the last competition day for AlgeriaGermanyGhanaIndia and the Netherlands! Last hours to contribute your photos to and to take part in competition in these countries’ contests!

    Remember that Serbia will still have their site open until July 16 and Syria till August 1:)

    The contest «Wiki Loves Earth» is closed at Andorra & SpainArmenia & Nagorno-KarabakhAustriaAzerbaijanBrazilEstoniaMacedoniaNepal and Ukraine, and first results are coming.

    Small Waterfall at Kyabobo National Park.jpg, © Sean Moran, CC-BY-SA 3.0

    Small Waterfall at Kyabobo National Park, Ghana
    © Sean Moran, CC-BY-SA 3.0

    Andorran TOP-10 best photos!

    Gorgeous news from Andorra – we can enjoy beautiful pictures from this green country!

    Andorran team carries on an intrigue and refuses to give any details such as places of these photos. So, we can show you only winners without prize-list!

    Lake “First Circus”. Ferran Llorens. CC BY-SA 3.0

    Pond Meligar, Circus Pessons. Mtpla. CC BY-SA 3.0

    First Pond (Ordino). Ferran Llorens. CC BY-SA 3.0

     

    Second Pond Juclar. Ferran Llorens. CC BY-SA 3.0

    Engolasters lake. Ferran Llorens. CC BY-SA 3.0

    Sorteny River. Víctor. CC BY-SA 3.0

     

    Os river passing through Bixessarri, Sant Julia de Loria, Andorra. Angela Llop. CC BY-SA 3.0

     

    Tristaina river. Ferran Llorens. CC BY-SA 3.0

    Inclés Valley, Canillo, Andorra. MARIA ROSA FERRE. CC BY-SA 3.0

     

    Pond on Valley Inclés (Canillo). Ferran Llorens. CC BY-SA 3.0

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    Winners of Wiki Loves Earth in Brazil!

    Thanks to professional jury and their quick work we already know the winners of Brazilian Wiki Loves Earth photo contest 2014!

    Please, look and relax, because these photos are amazing!

    1 st place. National park Serra dos Órgãos. Автор: Carlos Perez Couto. CC BY-SA 3.0

    2nd place. In “Praia da Feiticeira” beach, in Ilhabela-SP, a large boat seems to sail among the clouds. Roberto Pavezi Netto. CC BY-SA 3.0

    3rd place. National park of Fernando de Noronha. Eduardo Muruci/ CC BY-SA 3.0

    4th place. Forest in Algarobas. Diego Rego Monteiro. CC BY-SA 3.0

     

    5th place. National park of Fernando de Noronha. Eduardo Muruci. CC BY-SA 3.0

    6t place. Ecological park of Chico Mendes. A marijose. CC BY-SA 3.0

     

    7th place. Municipal park in Rio Sucuriú. Bruno Rodrigues Rausch. CC BY-SA 3.0

     

    8th place. Beach in national park of Fernando de Noronha. Eduardo Muruci. CC BY-SA 3.0

     

    9th place. Rio view. Eduardo Gabão. CC BY-SA 3.0

    10th place. Alto Araguaia. Diego Rego Monteiro. CC BY-SA 3.0

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    Beauty of Germany

    Germany is one of the participants who can receive your photos up to June 30.

    You can take part in the contest with homemade photos with particular national parks, nature reserves, natural monuments, Nature Park, Biosphere Reserve and other objects from the list.

    For your attention several beautiful places in Germany where you can take your photos and upload its to the Commons.

    Hainich National Park (GermanNationalpark Hainich), founded on December 31, 1997, is the 13th national park inGermany and the only one in Thuringia. One of the main objectives of the park is the protection of native beech forest. In 2011, the park was added to the Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and the Ancient Beech Forests of Germany World Heritage Site.

    The goal of Hainich National Park is to restore a large section of central European forest to its primordial state.

    Hainich National Park, Fernando Borges Ferreira. CC BY-SA 3.0

    The Bavarian Forest National Park (GermanNationalpark Bayerischer Wald) is a national park in the Eastern Bavarian Forest immediately on Germany‘s border with the Czech Republic. It was founded on 7 October 1970 as the firstnational park in Germany. Since its expansion on 1 August 1997 it has covered an area of 24,250 hectares. Together with the neighbouring Czech Bohemian Forest the Bavarian Forest forms the largest contiguous area of forest in Central Europe.

    Especially protected are the spruce-dominated highland forests, mixed mountain forests of fir, beech and spruce trees and water meadow spruce woods in the valleys. Although a few remnants of ancient forest remain, the National Park area is still heavily influenced by the former forestry industry. Since nature is now left to take its course again, there is no human intervention when there are catastrophic events such as large scale bark beetle infestation. This resulted in the 1990s in the death of a portion of the high elevation forests and triggered controversial discussions amongst the residents of the National Park, which highlighted differing attitudes to the wilderness. As the result of a compromise, bark beetle is now fought in the expansion area.

    The Bavarian Forest National Park, Marco Schönberger. CC BY-SA 3.0

    Pfaueninsel (“Peacock Island”) is an island in the River Havel situated in Berlin-Wannsee, in southwestern Berlin, near the border with Potsdam and Brandenburg. The island is part of the Palaces and Parks of Potsdam and BerlinUNESCO World Heritage Site and a popular destination for day-trippers. Pfaueninsel is also a nature reserve in accordance with the EU Habitats Directive and a Special Protection Area for wild birds.

    he island has largely retained its intended character as an idyll of nature: in addition to several free-ranging peacocks, other native and exotic birds can be found in captivity, complemented by a rich variety of flora. The entire island is designated as a nature reserve and since 1990 has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site, along with the several other castles and parks in the Potsdam/Berlin area. It can only be reached by a small ferry, but is a popular tourist destination. It is administered by the Stiftung Preußische Schlösser und Gärten (SPG).

    Pfaueninsel, Till Krech from Berlin, Germany. CC BY-SA 3.0

    The Harz National Park is a nature reserve in the German federal states of Lower Saxony and Saxony-Anhalt. It comprises large portions of the western Harz mountain range, extending from Herzberg and Bad Lauterberg at the southern edge to Bad Harzburg and Ilsenburg on the northern slopes. 95% of the area is covered with forests, mainly withspruce and beech woods, including several bogsgranite rocks and creeks. The park is part of the Natura 2000network of the European Union.

    Rare animals of the Harz National Park include the Dipper, the Black Stork,Peregrine Falcon, the European Wildcat and especially the Eurasian Lynx. The last lynx in the Harz Mountains had been shot in 1818, but in 1999 a project for reintroducing was established. Since 2002 several wild lynxes gave birth. An attempt to return the Capercaillie (Auerhuhn) however did not succeed.

    The Harz National Park, Akelei. CC BY-SA 3.0

    All information about Wiki Loves Earth in Deutschland you can find here.

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    Serbia has already started the contest!

    Today the participant of Wiki Loves Earth open its Wikimedia Commons page for your photos!

    Remember that the rules are common for all countries! So, if you have your own beautiful Serbian pictures of natural heritage – you are welcome to share it with Wikipedia.

    Find lists of Serbia on its’ pages.

    Popovica seen from the northern edge of the Fruška Gora National Park in Serbia. Author: Aktron. CC BY-SA 3.0

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    Ghana’s exotic beauty

    Ghanaian team of  Wiki Loves Earth international photo contest has decided to continue acceptance of photos up to June 30, 2014. So, all participants who want to take part in it have a chance to upload their works during this month.

    The contest started May 1, 2014. During this time we received 540 beautiful photos.

    Ada river, Ghana. Author: Dieu-Donné Gameli. CC BY-SA 3.0

    Terms of participation are samr for all countries. Only sites of natural heritage can be different. In Ghana there are:

    • National Parks
    • Forest Reserves
    • Protected areas
    • Beaches
    • Mountains
    • Caves
    • Waterfalls
    • Rivers, Lagoons, Ponds and lakes
    There are fantastic prizes to be won by the top 10 pictures. All these 10 pictures will qualify for the next stage Wiki Loves Earth (World) prizes when they fall in the top15 photos they are once again awarded with prizes from the Wiki Loves Earth International team.
    Visit one of amazing Ghanaian national parks, take photos and upload them to the Wikimedia Commons.

    Boti Falls, Eastern Region, Ghana. Author: magwanwagwan. CC BY-SA 3.0

     Mole National Park is Ghana‘s largest wildlife refuge. The park is located in northwest Ghana on grassland savanna and riparianecosystems at an elevation of 150 m, with sharp escarpment forming the southern boundary of the park. The park’s entrance is reached through the nearby town of Larabanga. The Lovi and Mole Rivers are ephemeral rivers flowing through the park, leaving behind only drinking holes during the long dry season. This area of Ghana receives over 1000 mm per year of rainfall. A long-term study has been done on Mole National Park to understand the impact of human hunters on the animals in the preserve.

    Mole National Park. Ghana. Author: Sean Moran. CC BY-SA 3.0

    The Bui National Park is found in Ghana. It was established in 1971. This site is 1820 km². The reserve is notable for its Hippopotamuspopulation in the Black Volta. The endangered black and white colobus monkey and a variety of antelopes and birds are also present. Part of the park will be inundated by the reservoir of the Bui Dam, which has been under construction since 2009. The filling of the reservoir is expected to begin in 2011.

    The Bui bayou is a wet land found in the brong ahafo region of Ghana. Author: Kelsdark. CC BY-SA 3.0

    Digya National Park is the second largest national park and the oldest protected area in Ghana. It is located in the Brong-Ahafo Region. Digya National Park was created in 1900 as a protected area, the first in Ghana. The park is home to at least six primate species and elephants belonging to some of the less studied species in Africa. The elephant population in the park is the second largest in Ghana. There are also manatees and clawless otters in arms of Lake Volta that extend into Digya National Park. More than 236 species of birds live in the park. This park is the only wildlife territory in Ghana to border on Lake Volta, the largest man-made body of water in the country.

    Campfire at the White Volta, Ghana. Author: Sean Moran. CC BY-SA 3.0

    Kakum National Park, located in the coastal environs of the Central Region of Ghana. The uniqueness of this park lies in the fact that it was established at the initiative of the local people and not by the State Department of wildlife who are responsible for wildlife preservation in Ghana.The most notable endangered species of fauna in the park are Diana monkeygiant bongo antelopeyellow-backed duiker andAfrican elephant. It is also an Important Bird Area recognized by the Bird Life International with the bird area fully overlapping the park area. The bird inventory confirmed 266 species in the park, including eight species of global conservation concern. One of these species of concern is the white-breasted guineafowl. Nine species of hornbill and the African grey parrot have been recorded. It is very rich in butterflies as well, and a new species was discovered in 1993. As of 2012, the densest population of forest elephants in Ghana is located in Kakum.

    Kakum National park. Ghana. Author: Sinetifik. CC BY-SA 3.0

    Bia National Park is a national park in the Western Region of Ghana. It is also a biosphere reserve with a 563 square kilometer resource reserve. It has some of Ghana’s last remnants of relatively untouched forest complete with its full diversity of wildlife. Some of the tallest trees left in West Africa are found in this national park.

    Kyabobo National Park, Ghana. Author: Sean Moran. CC BY-SA 3.0

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