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Wildlife Photographer of the Year (Postcard) - Swan's Perspective

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POSTCARD: Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2022 - Swan's Perspective

Three mute swans peer down at Mateusz as he lies on his back holding his camera above him, partly as a shield while the curious swans nip at him. The river runs through his home city of Wrocław, Poland, and this was a popular spot to feed the mute swans, which gather in expectation. Suitable free food is provided – seeds, corn and carrots – both to discourage the feeding of bread, which can cause digestive problems, and to help the swans through the harsh winters.

On this afternoon, it was -10°C (14°F), and Mateusz was the only visitor, lying out on the ice in the hope of achieving a new angle on a familiar subject. Curiosity was enough to bring the swans. The orange-red beak – vivid against the monochromatic scene – belongs to the adult. The other two are juveniles in their first winter, their beaks only achieving adult shape and colour in their second year. As if in retaliation for the lack of food, the boldest bird went on to grab Mateusz’s woollen cap, which put an end to his icy shoot.

Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2022
A Swan’s Perspective
Mateusz Piesiak
Rising Star Portfolio Award, Winner