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to document its beauty and diversity. They witness breath-taking landscapes, exciting wildlife behavior, and surprising glimpses of Earth's soaring peaks and mysterious ocean depths. The powerful photographs they bring home awaken our desire to explore, to understand, and to conserve the natural world.

The Nature's Best Photography Windland Smith Rice International Awards program was created to celebrate these images and recognize the talented men and women behind them. Run in partnership with the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, this annual, worldwide competition is open to the public and juried by professionals in science, publishing, and conservation.

This exhibition reveals some of nature's finest moments selected from more than 500,000 photographs submitted to the Awards program over the past 20 years.

Nature's Best Photography Magazine Awards Special Issue Cover The 20th Anniversary Nature's Best Photography Awards Collectors Edition is available in the museum shop or online at the Nature's Best website.

Featured Video

Burrowing Owl by Bence MáÌ�té. Burrowing Owl by Bence Máté.

Nature's Best Photography
Caption Contest

Some pictures seem to cry out for a humorous caption. As you inspect the photos in the exhibition, let your imagination roam, take a selfie with your favorite photo, or just the image alone, and send us an amusing caption to accompany it.
Take the Nature's Best challenge and you may win a free copy of Nature's Best Photography magazine. Email your captions to

Encyclopedia of Life Logo

Learn more about the animals and plants featured in this exhibit. Visit the Encyclopedia of Life website's online collection.

Nature's Best Photography Windland Smith Rice International Awards Competition

Enter your photos in the next competition and maybe your work will journey from the wild to the walls of the Smithsonian.

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