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National Wildlife Photo Contest

Photo Contest 2021

The 50th annual National Wildlife® Photo Contest is closed.

Our 2021 photo contest is open from January 13, 2021 through April 4, 2021. Every person who enters not only honors their own work, but also helps support the conservation mission of the National Wildlife Federation, which is dedicated to saving wildlife species and their habitats. Photographers retain rights to their work and have the option to donate images, and a modest entry fee helps support the National Wildlife Federation's conservation work, so please enter your photographs—and good luck!

We are excited to announce the following nine categories for entry in our 2021 contest: Birds, Mammals, Baby Animals, Other Wildlife, Landscapes & Plants, People in Nature, Mobile, Young Nature Photographers (for nature photographers age 13-17) and a new Portfolio category.

Tamron SP 150-600mm Di VC USD G2 (model A022)

Winners will receive cash prizes. This year—in honor of our 50th anniversary—the Grand Prize winner will be honored with our Nature’s Witness Award, a cash prize of $5,000 and an SP 150-600mm Di VC USD G2 lens (valued at $1,399) from Tamron, a proud supporter of the 2021 National Wildlife Photo Contest. The winner of our new portfolio category will be awarded $750. In each of the eight subject categories, first place wins $500 and second place wins $250.

We’re also very excited to announce the new People’s Choice Award. Anyone 13+ years of age can get in on the fun and vote!



We're proud to announce the winners of the 2020 Garden for Wildlife™ Photo Contest!

The Garden for Wildlife Photo Contest seeks to illustrate the faces of Garden for Wildlife through striking, colorful images showcasing the impact of habitat gardens on wildlife and people–in urban, suburban, and rural settings, and on land, in the air, and in water. Thank you to everyone who participated in this year's contest. We sincerely appreciate your contribution and we’re glad you’re a part of this growing family of talented, dedicated people! Visit to see the public gallery.


A crocodile swims through the water in Jardines de la Reina, Cuba.

See the 49th annual National Wildlife® Photo Contest winners

The National Wildlife Photo Contest, which began nearly five decades ago, celebrates the power of nature photography. These compelling images—made ethically in the wild—can inspire people to care about the creatures that share our planet and act on their behalf. For wildlife photographers, documenting the lives of animals is a passionate mission—revealing what’s often unseen and igniting human compassion for the natural world we’re all bound to protect. You’ll feel that bond when you gaze at these glorious winning images and honorable mentions, standouts from the from the more than 29,000 we received in our 2020 photo contest. With special thanks to Tamron, proud supporter of the 2020 National Wildlife Photo Contest.


See National Wildlife Photo Contest photography on exhibit

The National Wildlife Federation and the American Association for the Advancement of Science are proud to present “Nature’s Witness™,” an exhibition of 50 powerful wildlife photographs chosen to inspire conservation. The exhibit will run from Nov. 1, 2019 through 2020 (TBA). See more information or check out our virtual exhibit.

You can further support our mission by becoming a member of the National Wildlife Federation, which entitles you to receive National Wildlife magazine as a benefit of membership. For more information on how to join and get the magazine, click here.

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More than one-third of U.S. fish and wildlife species are at risk of extinction in the coming decades. We're on the ground in seven regions across the country, collaborating with 53 state and territory affiliates to reverse the crisis and ensure wildlife thrive.

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