Natural History Museum in London has just announced the winners of its Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. The images were chosen from more than 50,000 entries submitted from 92 countries. We select some underwater winning photos that depict the incredible diversity of life on this blue planet.
Trapped by the surrounding ice field, the iceberg floats safely above the sea floor. Photo: Laurent Ballesta
The remora curves in front of its giant host: a whale shark. Photo: Alex Sher
Spider crabs usually come together for protection while they moult or mate, but an octopus appears ‘like an excited child in a candy store’, as it chose its final catch. Photo: Justin Gilligan
When sea angels mate, individuals transfer sperm to one another in synchrony before laying 100 or so tiny eggs in the ocean. Photo: Andrey Narchuk
Sperm whales aggregate like this will rub and roll against each other to exfoliate their neighbour’s dead skin. Photo: Tony Wu
The killer whales decimate this shoal of herring. Photo: George Karbus
Weddell seals give birth on ice and take their offspring for their first frosty swim a few weeks later. Photo: Laurent Ballesta
By swimming in a tight, coordinated school, the slender mackerel confuse their predators, striped European barracudas and broader bluefish. Photo: Jordi Chias Pujol
The tiny eyes of the parasitic isopods peered out through the fish’s mouths. Photo: Qing Lin
This phyllosoma, a lobster larva, grips the empty bell of a small dead jellyfish, a mauve stinger. Photo: Anthony Berberian
The sandbar sharks circled far below, slipping in and out of the dark like ghostly apparitions. Photo: Santosh Shanmuga
A seahorse seized upon a cotton bud as a stable anchor. Photo: Justin Hofman
See the full gallery of winners and finalists here.