I’m not going easy by Robert Ferguson
Winner – People’s Choice Award
Image title: I’m not going easy
Photographer: Robert Ferguson
Equipment used: Canon EOS-1D X Mark II, 200-400mm f/4
This is the Great white pelican (Pelecanus onocrotalus), struggling with a non-native fish. These wonderful birds are free to roam, but have established a large colony on one of the artificial islands in the old Jurong park in Singapore.
I had set up my camera to take some portraits and watch their behaviour, and noticed one particular bird that had caught one of the big fish from the pond. I watched, intrigued, as the bird swam in circles, dipping his bill, taking water, then raising his beak to attempt to swallow his large prey. But every time the fish extended its sharp spines on its fins – you can see it hooked on the beak here – and lodged itself firmly.
This went on for over 20 minutes, with no sign of either party tiring. I was fascinated to see the intricate veins in the birds throat pouch, as the overcast day backlit the thin skin, and I had to move and crouch low to the ground to get the shot.