PICS: World Oceans Day photo contest winners leave us inspired


Cape Town - The winners of the third annual World Oceans Day photo contest have been announced, crowning Beth Watson from the United States as the overall champion for her incredible underwater work. 

Watson is a experienced underwater photographer, and says the realm of diving and photography continues to fascinating her. 

The photo contest results were announced on World Oceans Day this year, at a reception at United Nations Headquarters in New York. 

Five judges from across the globe selected the 1st, 2nd and 3rd place images from hundreds of entries. The following photographers took the top spot in the five respective categories: 

Above Water Seascapes
Winner - Mathieu Foulquié 


Making a Difference: Humans in Action

Winner - Michele Hall 



Underwater Life

Winner - Gregory Lecoeur



Underwater Seascapes

Winner - Alex Lindbloom



Youth Photographer

Winner - Marlyss Brightwell


An overall, 2016 World Oceans Day Theme winner was also selected by the organisers. This year, Beth Watson took the top laurels for this incredible image: 


The competition was dominated mostly by French and American photographers, who had four and five photographers in the winning and runner up positions, respectively. The only African continent photograph to claim a top spot was taken by Youth Photographer Indigo Bolandrini from Egypt. 

You can view all the winners and runners up of this year's WOD Photo Contest here: 

The finalists’ photographs will feature in travelling exhibition around the world, accompanied by a narrative that underlines the importance of the oceans for humanity. 

This is in an effort to ensure that the plight of the oceans and its inhabitants remains top of the agenda throughout the year, not just on World Oceans Day itself.

This year on World Oceans Day, the 'Healthy oceans, healthy planet' theme was highlighted, with a special effort to stop plastic pollution in the world's life-giving seas.

SEE: #MyOceanPromise: Make waves on World Oceans Day

The World Oceans Day Photo Competition is organised jointly by the UN Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea, The Ocean Project, World Ocean Network, World Festival of Underwater Images, IAEA Ocean Acidification International Coordination Centre, and Dive Photo Guide.

If you would like to enter next year's competition, you can do so online

What to read next on Traveller24

#WorldOceansDay: How you can make a responsible seafood choice

#MyOceanPromise: Make waves on World Oceans Day

#ShockWildlifeTruths: Dwindling SA sharks in focus on World Oceans Day

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