The entries for the Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2020 have been unveiled, and the selection is astonishing. Photographs of cheetahs in raging rivers and a fox searching for its prey are amongst the incredible range of highly commended images that have been released in anticipation of an exhibit at Natural History Museum in London on 15 October 2021.

The competition, produced by the museum, received a record-breaking number of photographs from professional and amateur photographers from over 95 countries worldwide.

“This year’s inspiring exhibition will move and empower audiences to advocate for the natural world,” said Dr. Doug Gurr, the Director of the Museum in a statement.

The Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2020 entries are a firm reminder of the vulnerability of our planet and the variety of its nature. This year’s competition winners will be announced on October 12, 2021, during a “not-to-be-missed” virtual awards show.

“Apollo Landing” by Emelin Dupieux, France

Highly commended, 11-14 Years category

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Emelin Dupieux/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Emelin Dupieux’s image shows an Apollo butterfly as its sets down on an oxeye daisy.

“Beautiful Bloodsucker” by Gil Wizen, Israel/Canada

Highly commended, Behaviour — Invertebrates category

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Gil Wizen/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Gil Wizen displays a female ornamented mosquito in action.

“Storm Fox” by Johnny Armstrong, US

Highly commended, Animal Portraits category

Jonny Armstrong Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Jonny Armstrong/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

A fox searching in the shallows for salmon carcasses.

“Raw Moment” by Laura Jackson, UK

Highly commended, Animal Portraits category

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Lara Jackson/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Laura Jackson captures an image of a young lioness with bright red blood dripping from her muzzle.

“The Great Swim” by Buddhilini de Soyza, Sri Lanka/Australia

Highly commended, Behaviour — Mammals category

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Buddhilini de Soyza/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Buddhilini de Soyza captures male cheetahs swimming through raging waters.

“Toxic Design” by Gheorghe Popa, Romania

Highly commended, Natural Artistry category

Rakesh Pulapa Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Rakesh Pulapa/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Gheorghe Popa shot this eye-catching photo of a small river in the Geamana Valley, within Romania’s Apuseni Mountains.

“Mushroom Magic” by Juergen Freund, Germany/Australia

Highly commended, Plants and Fungi category

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Juergen Freund/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

A ghost fungus on a dead tree after a monsoon rain.

“Lockdown Chicks” by Gagana Mendis Wickramasinghe, Sri Lanka

Highly commended, 10 years and under category

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Gagana Mendis Wickramasinghe/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Gagana Mendis Wickramasinghe’s photograph shows a father rose-ringed parakeet feeding his chicks.

“Net Loss” by Audun Rikardsen, Norway

Highly commended, Oceans — The Bigger Picture category

Audun Rikardsen Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Audun Rikardsen/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Audun Rikardsen catches the shocking image of a slick of dead and dying herrings covering the surface of the sea off the coast of Norway.

“Deep Feelers” by Laurent Ballesta, France

Highly commended, Underwater category

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Laurent Ballesta/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Laurent Ballesta came across a community of narwhal shrimp in the deep water off the French Mediterranean coast.

“Natural Magnetism” by Jaime Culebras, Spain

Highly commended, Urban Wildlife

Jaime Culebras Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Jaime Culebras/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

A tarantula hawk wasp head to head with a tarantula in Quito, Ecuador.

“Up for Grabs” by Jack Zhi, US

Highly commended, Behaviour — Birds category

Jack-Zhi-Wildlife-Photographer-of-the-Year-2021

Photo: Jack Zhi/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Two white-tailed kites fighting over a mouse in mid-air.

“Lynx on the Threshold” by Sergio Marijuán, Spain

Highly commended, Urban Wildlife category

Sergio Marijuan Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Sergio Marijuán/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

A young Iberian lynx stopping in front of a doorway of the abandoned hayloft.

“The nurturing wetland” by Rakesh Pulapa, India

Highly commended, Wetlands — The Bigger Picture category

Rakesh Pulapa Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Rakesh Pulapa/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Houses on the edge of Kakinada city, buffered from the sea by the remains of a mangrove swamp.

“A Caring Hand” by Douglas Gimesy, Australia

Highly commended, Photojournalism category

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Douglas Gimesy/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Gimesy captured the vulnerability of a nursing orphaned bat.

“The Gripping End” by Wei Fu, Thailand

Highly commended, Behaviour — Amphibians and Reptiles category

Wei Fu Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2021

Photo: Wei Fu/Wildlife Photographer of the Year

A red-spotted tokay gecko clamped to the head of a golden tree snake.