The winning shots!
Portraying cetaceans and turtles in the open sea is difficult: out of the water the animals expose themselves for a moment and meeting them while diving requires a lot of luck and, at the same time, planning.
Getting a good, sharp and well exposed image is already a great challenge, so in the selection of the winners the jury gave some importance to this aspect, but also took into account the rarity of the species and the documented behavior.
So here is the podium of the competition, with the related reasons.
Eleonora Pignata, with the fabulous jump of the striped dolphin (Stenella coerulalba) “frozen” in flight. The image is very sharp and large (so it was not very “cropped”), two aspects that testify to the photographer’s promptness and ability.
Gabriella Motta, with the Risso’s dolphins (Grampus griseus) on the surface. These cetaceans, not easy to observe in the Mediterranean, are portrayed in close contact, with two older individuals, with lighter bodies, flanking a young one.
Camilla Aiuti, with the fin whale (Balaenoptera physalus) about to emerge. The image is very evocative, with the silhouette of the giant recognizable under the slightly rippled sea surface. In the background, another individual can be glimpsed, a feature that makes this photograph even more special.