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And The Winners Are …

First place: Frank Binder’s “Shakin'”

Second place:  John Hoyt’s “Female Anhinga”

Third place:  Cheri Hollis’ “True Blue”

The winners of the annual “Ding” Darling Days Amateur Nature Photography Contest have been announced and, as usual, the winning photos are amazing.

Judges selected three winners and 11 honorable mentions out of 121 entries from 20 states, the Netherlands, and Switzerland. All photograph entries were shot at the J.N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge complex.

First place went to Frank Brinker of Oberageri, Switzerland, for his great blue heron portrait titled “Shakin’.” Contest judge Holly D. Smith, city of Sanibel councilwoman,  remarked on its stunning depth-of-field and unique capture. “I love its personality, pure and simple,” she said of the bird’s disheveled appearance, looking as though it just shook water from its feathers.

John Hoyt from Lewes, Del., took second place with a black-and-white close-up of a female anhinga. “It’s so strikingly artistic with dramatic lighting and great detail,” said judge Chelle Koster Walton, a Sanibel photojournalist.

In third place was Cheri Hollis from Sanibel, with a blue-winged teal shot titled “True Blue.” “She actually got all the fine details of the duck, even the color under its wing, and the ripples in the water,” said refuge ranger Monica Scroggin, the third judge.

The winning photographs and honorable mention award entries will be on display in the Refuge Education Center throughout the year.

To view the other top-ranking entries, visit dingdarlingsociety.org/articles/photo-contests.

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