The tangy butterscotch glow of a limestone cave in Serbia soaking up the slanting sun. The emerald green of lush German forest and pond covered with lush weeds and trees. The stark white and blue of a Ukraine snowscape 2,028 meters above sea level, where snowy peaks meet cloud and sky.
The colors of nature burst from the 15 finalists of Wiki Loves Earth, the photo contest now in its third year of crowdsourcing gorgeous landscapes from more than 13,600 participants. The top 15 photos this year come from Serbia, Bulgaria, Nepal, Estonia, Ukraine, Spain, Austria, Brazil, Germany, and Thailand.
National judging in 26 regions sorted through 115,000 photos and sent the best to international judges from Ghana, Germany, South Africa, Kosovo, France, India, Estonia, Indonesia, and Bulgaria.
This year, the contest expanded to include a collaboration with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, better known by its acronym UNESCO. Contestants were invited to upload photos in a separate category for UNESCO biosphere reserves in 120 different countries.
You can see more about Wiki Loves Earth on its website, and this year’s jury report on Commons.
This year, “Wikimedians of Bulgaria” User Group participates for the second time with a local edition of the photo contest for environmentally protected territories, “Wiki Loves Earth 2016 Bulgaria“. And one of the ten winners in the national stage of the competition will be printed as an official postage stamp of the Republic of Bulgaria. This is the additional ‘surprise’ award, which the organizing team of the competition in 2016 arranged along with the planned prizes – vouchers for photographic equipment shops or bookshops, that will be provided under a project funded by the Wikimedia Foundation.
Which one of the ten photos would illustrate the postage stamp, was a decision taken by the members of the Committee of Postage Issuance under the Ministry of Transport, Communications and Information Technologies. And this choice has already been made. It is the 2nd-ranked photography in Top 10, by Emiliya Toncheva, which depicts a griffon vulture in the Valchi Dol Reserve near the small town of Madzharovo in Eastern Rhodopes, Bulgaria. Notably, Emiliya was the first volunteer to contribute her photos to the “Wiki Loves Earth 2016 Bulgaria” in the very first day of the contest, June, 1.
The Committee approved the young illustrator Dilyana Elshishka for designer of the postage stamp, and determined the nominal of BGN 2 (approx. EUR 1), which is the price for sending a postcard from Bulgaria to United States, for example. This stamp will be in valid use and circulation for the next three years. The attempt is to have the stamp ready around October, 1 when the local WLE organizing team is conducting the award ceremony in the National Museum of Natural History in Sofia.
The photograph selected by the Committee of Postage Stamp Issuance is special because it will stay on the very first Wikimedia-related postage stamp in Bulgaria, which also is the first one for the “Wiki Loves Earth” contest globally.
The photo is noteworthy also for touching one of the most important topics of Bulgarian environmental protection: protection of the birds of prey. In Bulgaria, all the three nesting or feeding vulture species – Griffon vulture (Gyps fulvus), Egyptian vulture (Neophron percnopterus) and Cinereous vulture (Aegypius monachus) are rare and protected species, and the Bearded vulture (Gypaetus barbatus) has been since 2007 in a re-introduction program, because of being extinct from the territory of Bulgaria. And while the griffon vulture’s population can nowadays be considered stabilized, the Egyptian vulture continues to be the most rapidly declining among all birds of prey in Europe, with more than 80% decreased population in the Balkans for the last 30 years. Poisons intended to kill agricultural pests are the main reason for the extinction of vultures, whose ecologic role is the one of the natural sanitarians of wildlife.
Author and translator: Vassia Atanassova
Editors: Anelia Bobeva, Nikola Kalchev, Stanislav Yordanov
Initially planned until May 31, the organizing committee of photography contest Wiki Loves Earth in Morocco, namely Wikimedia Morocco, announced that he decided to extend the duration of the contest for another week, so he closed the June 7. Given the large number of participants continues to grow and multiplying in a processive way uploaded photos.
Prévue initialement jusqu’au 31 mai, le comité d’organisation du concours de photographie Wiki Loves Earth au Maroc, à savoir Wikimedia Morocco, a annoncé qu’il a décidé exceptionnellement de prolonger la durée du concours pour une autre semaine, ainsi il se clôtura le 7 juin prochain. Vu le grand nombre de participants qui ne cesse d’augmenter multipliant ainsi de manière processive les photos téléversées.
مُقرر مبدئيا إلى غاية 31 مايو، أعلنت اللجنة المنظمة للمسابقة التصوير الفوتوغرافي ويكي تهوى الأرض في المغرب، ويكيميديا المغرب، أنها قررت استثنائيا تمديد فترة المسابقة لمدة أسبوع آخر، لتنتهي بذلك في 7 يونيو. نظرا للعدد الكبير من المشاركين الذي يتزايد مع الأيام، و الذي يرفع معه بشكل إضطرادي عدد الصور المشاركة
Wiki Loves Earth, a competition where participants take photographs of protected natural areas and upload their photos to Wikimedia Commons, was held internationally for the second time in 2015 with 26 countries. The contest is over, and we are now able to present the international winners.
The goal of Wiki Loves Earth is two-fold. First, we aim to photograph as many natural monuments and protected areas as possible and release the imagery under a free license. Second, we contribute to environmental protection by raising public awareness.
The idea of Wiki Loves Earth began in Ukraine in 2013. In 2014, Wiki Loves Earth was joined by 15 other countries from four different continents—Europe, Asia, Africa and America.
During 2015, over 100,000 pictures were submitted by the participants.
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 26 participating countries, the international jury had to consider a total of 259 candidate pictures. The jury selected and ranked the photos in several stages by means of a dedicated web tool.
The international jury was composed of 9 photographers from different countries, all experienced in nature photography: Dmytro Balkhovitin (Ukraine), Matthew Buck (Great Britain), Dietmar Bartz (Germany), Walaa Abdel Manaem (Egypt), Alex Wang (USA), Katerina Zareva-Simeonova (Bulgaria), Zeynel Cebeci (Turkey), Susanne Plank (Austria) and Yathin Krishnappa (India).
After careful evaluation jury members have selected the following images, in addition to the winning image above.
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!
WLE International team
All photographs in this post are published by their authors under CC BY-SA. Click the photos for details.
Germany announced their national winners. This year contestants uploaded a lot of photos of wild life, so no wonder, that we have them among the winning images. Germany is the 3rd country which choose their top-10 best photos. Take a look!
Alcedo atthis (Common kingfisher)
The common kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) also known as Eurasian kingfisher, or river kingfisher, is a small kingfisher with seven subspecies recognized within its wide distribution across Eurasia and North Africa. It is resident in much of its range, but migratesfrom areas where rivers freeze in winter.
This sparrow-sized bird has the typical short-tailed, large-headed kingfisher profile; it has blue upperparts, orange underparts and a long bill. It feeds mainly on fish, caught by diving, and has special visual adaptions to enable it to see prey under water. The glossy white eggs are laid in a nest at the end of a burrow in a riverbank. Continue reading “Top-10 best photos of Germany”
“Wiki Loves Earth 2015 ” closed on 31 May at 0:00:00 Kyiv time with 97 342 photos uploaded from 1-31 May. This year competition broke down the record of the WLE 2014.
The contest is closed in 19 of 26 participating countries.
Some countries decidede to prolonged the contest: Algeria, Austria, Nepal, Thailand – till 30 June, Tunisia – till 15 June.
In the last couple of days of the contest the leaders in the country race have changed. Continue reading “WLE 2015: who is on the run?”
Wiki Loves Earth is organized through numerous national contests, coordinated by local volunteers. The national juries then submit up to 10 pictures to the international stage of the contest. Last year with 16 participating countries, the international jury had to consider a total of 156 candidate pictures!
This photo contest is not only a great opportunity to show the charms of nature, but also a chance to draw public attention to environmental problems and Wikipedian activities. The focus is not only on sites of national importance, but also on the areas protected on the regional level and on the widest variety of natural sites possible: forests, parks, gardens, rocks, caves and whatever is protected within the participating countries. This means that most users will be able to find several natural heritage sites close to them.
The full report of the last year’s international jury, explaining its work, selection process and bringing the results together with comments of the jury, is available here.
We truly hope that you will participate in our joint efforts to make this year’s contest even brighter!
All photographs in this post are published by their authors. Click the photos for details.
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.
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.