Many congratulations to all our winners and everyone who took part in the competition. The standard of entries was extermely high.

Overall winners:

1st  Georgia Poyner – Narooma

Georgia Poyner 13

Hunting Reef Heron
This heron was hunting around Narooma boat ramp, when I photographed it catching dinner! I used a canon powershot SX50

2nd Penny Beaver – Bermagui


Spiny spider – Long Swamp Bermagui(Gasteracantha minax)

3rd Harrison Warne – Merimbula

H Warne

Mustard bellied snake 2
Mustard bellied snake in the “S” position. Taken with an olympus TG – 820

The identities of the entrants were hidden from the judges so the judging was completely impartial.

Thank you to David Gallan, Peter Horne and Rob Richardson for all your difficult work to choose from such a rich and varied collection of images.

Here are the judges’ comments:


The standard was a little uneven but quite pleasing for the first competition. The bird section was predictably very strong. 
 I like to see more creative views, not always images including the whole subject. 
I think in these competitions it’s the wow factor that makes an image stand out. Control of focus, lighting and background often are the factors separating the best from the others.
The overall winners are subjects technically difficult to record and are outstanding in terms of all criteria. They capture behaviour / action in a brilliant way. 
I have spent a lot of time deciding on the photos for the competition. It was not an easy task. The standard of photos submitted was generally very high. I chose the photos on originality, difficulty of getting a shot, captions and unusual birds though not particularly rarest birds. I really could have given highly commended to most of the photos.

Well done everyone! great photos and a great competition – keep up the good work for next year’s comp.


1st  Michael McMaster


Hydatins physis Rose petal Bubble Shell – Blue Pool

2nd Robyn Miller

R Miller

blue shower cap
The Umbrella Jelly on page 146 of Graham J. Adgar’s book Australian Marine Life is the closest to this blue “shower cap” jelly. The problem with identifying these marine creatures is that many have not been listed. Aequarea Eurhodina is the name given to the umbrella jelly. To snorkel off our coastline is to experience something like what Darwin must have felt, when he stepped onto the Galapagos Islands. We are surrounded by mysterious unlisted creatures. How exciting!

3rd  Rose – Marie McMaster


Little Sea Lizard (Nudibranch) – Glaucus marginata, Porpita Sailor – Porpita porpita & By The Wind Sailor – Velella velella


1st Leo Berzins

L Berzins

Stridulating Hermit Crab
Having a compact camera in your pocket when you’re out and about occasionally pays off. This was an opportunistic shot made during a midday walk by jumping down from the boardwalk at Wagonga Inlet in Narooma after spotting this hermit crab

2nd Paul Whittock

Paul W

Evasive Action
A different whale photo. One of a series taken when a pod of whales and short tailed shearwaters were feeding in the same place off Salwater Creek. The whale itself is great but the shearwater just happened to intrude and change the nature of the photo. Pentax KD 1000 with sigma 75-300 zoom f/13 at 1/3000

3rd Liz Allen

L Allen

Violet Snail and Goose Barnacles as travelling companions


1st Harrison Warne

H Warne

Mustard bellied snake 2
Mustard bellied snake in the “S” position. Taken with an olympus TG – 820

2nd Harrison Warne

H Warne

Peron’s Tree Frog
Peron’s tree frog resting on the handle of a shovel. Taken with an olympus TG – 820

3rd Georgia Poyner

GP 13

Seal study 6
Seals photographed at Montague Island, Narooma, using a Canon Powershot SX50


1st Penny Beaver


Soldier Crab 3 – Bermagui River tidal flat(Mictyris longicarpus)

2nd Harrison Warne


Blue Damselfly
Damselfly resting on a reed. Taken with an olympus TG – 820

3rd Harrison Warne


Camouflaged grasshopper – taken with an olympus TG – 820


1st Georgia Poyner

Georgia Poyner 13

Hunting Reef Heron
This heron was hunting around Narooma boat ramp, when I photographed it catching dinner! I used a canon powershot SX50

2nd Leo Berzins


Striated Heron
A Striated Heron (also known as Mangrove Heron) with a freshly speared Luderick in Merimbula Lake

3rd Penny Beaver


All heading for the same thing. FOOD.
Taken off Wollongong, SOSSA pelagic trip. Black-browed Albatross (Diomedea impavida) Adult and a Short-tailed Shearwater (Puffinus tenuirostris)


1st Liz Allen

L Allen

Paper Daisies

2nd Michael McMaster


Large Tongue Orchid

3rd Rose -Marie McMaster


Fly Agaric on top of the fungus Amantita muscaria. Found at Tanja nestled in pine needles


1st Rose-Marie McMaster


Croajingolong Brushtail Possum

2nd Kerry Vance

Kerry V

Orb Spider
Taken 28th January 2012 12:06am on my front veranda, 62 Bega St, Tathra with a Canon EOS 450D fitted with an EFS 55-250mm zoom lens

3rd Rose -Marie McMaster


Long Nosed Potoroo Gillard’s Beach – photographed at night while we were camping for the weekend..


1st Georgia Poyner

GP 13

Jumping for Joy
Why do dolphins jump? Because they can! Photographed off Narooma, with a canon powershot SX50

2nd Georgia Poyner

GP 13

Close Up
A detailed study of a maori wrasse. The colours on them are just superb. Photographed with canon powershot SX50

3rd Georgia Poyner

GP 13

Sea star study
A close up taken of a sea star


1st Georgia Poyner

 Jakob taking samples This is my brother, Jakob, helping to collect samples. Photographed in Narooma.

Jakob taking samples
This is my brother, Jakob, helping to collect samples. Photographed in Narooma.

2nd Robyn Wimbush


Misty Morning (or Three Old Wives in the Bruce Steer Pool)

3rd Rose-Marie McMaster


Mill Beach rock pool outing

Dear Atlanats,

I would like to say how grateful I am that everyone has contributed so much to the success of this first Atlas of Life  competition. We live in a wonderful age where the advances in technology allow us to see far more of the wonders of the natural world than ever before. It is so good to be able to see all the detail of all the creatures around us, and so good to be able to share that joy.

I was of course deeply sad not even to get a Highly commended for any of my pictures, but seeing the quality of the entries I cannot be surprised and I vow to try harder for next year.

Thank you all, Libby Hepburn


In no particular order:

It’s Mine – Peregrine – John Van Der Heul

Duet – Penny Beaver

Black Browed Albatross (Diomedea melanophrys) juvenile subspecies Southern Ocean – Penny Beaver

Seabird Study – Penny Beaver

Royal Spoonbills 1 – Penny Beaver

Under the Cap – Teresa van Der Heul

Hanging on Bellfrog – Steve Sass

Fairy Prion – Paul Whittock

Getting a closer look – Libby Hepburn

Little Tern – Leo Berzins

Sunfish – Georgia Poyner

Flower spider – Harrison Warne

Great Egret Landing – Leo Berzins

Forest Grump – Teresa van Der Heul

Photographed at Dalmeny Lake, in front of my house, using a canon powershot SX50 – Georgia Poyner

Octopus 2 – eye study This octopus was photographed around Narooma boatramp – Georgia Poyner

Common Dolphin leaping in wake of Cat Balou – Liz Allen

Seal study 2, 5 – Georgia Poyner

Coming in to land (bee towards flower) Rose- Marie McMaster

Spiny spider – Long Swamp Bermagui(Gasteracantha minax) – Penny Beaver

Glossy Motion (Birds) – Doug Reckord

Sooty Oystercatcher – Leo Berzins

Southern Right whale – Georgia Poyner

Bow riding – Georgia Poyner

Prof Vic at work – Rose-Marie McMaster

 Bara Trauma – Georgia Poyner

Buff-banded Rail – Leo Berzins

Pelican feet – Georgia Poyner

Eagle at Montague
This white bellied sea eagle was photographed at Montague Island – Leo Berzins

Triplets – Leo Berzins
These pelicans were photographed at Narooma Boardwalk, using a Canon Powershot D10

Morning snacks for Welcome Swallows on Tura Beach – Liz Allen


Hunting Reef Heron 2 – Georgia Poyner

The death of a bronze wing A bronze wing – George Cresswell

Fungi – Liz Allen

Cuttlefish at Merimbula Wharf – Harrison Warne

Slime mold Lamproderma arcyrionema at maturity measured 2.0mm. – Teresa Van Der Heul

Dolphin Photographed off Narooma – Georgia Poyner

Bow riding Dolphins – Georgia Poyner

The Green & Golden Bell frog – Steve Sass

Buzzting with life (Grass Tree & insects) – Doug Reckord

Rainbow Lorikeet – Leo Berzins

 Evasive Action – Paul Whittock

 Eel 1 – Georgia Poyner

 Storm Sooties – Stan Gorton

 Shell death assemblage – Rose – Marie McMaster

White-faced Heron – Leo Berzins
A White-faced Heron making an unsuccessful strike at a passing fish near the Bega River mouth at Mogareeka, just north of Tathra

 You are kidding – Kookaburras – John Van Der Heul

 Little Tern – Leo Berzins

 Calamari – Chris Perrott

 Violet sea snail – Rose – Marie McMaster

 Arrested Motion – Paul Whittock

 Sea stars at Green Cape – Liz Allen

 Lace Monitor – Head study – John Van Der Heul

 Seal studies 7, 8 – Georgia Poyner

BB small mammal – Rose -Marie McMaster

 Eastern Snake-necked tortoise – Kerry Vance

 Butterfly Buddlia – Rose – Marie McMaster

 Lizard – this cheeky little critter – Chris Perrott

 Leaf curling spider – Kerry Vance

 Orchard butterfly – Kerry Vance

 Unidentified hairy – Penny Beaver

 Wattle I eat next – Gang Gang – Doug Reckord

 Scarlet Honeyeater – Kerry Vance

 Hermit Crab portrait (underwater) – Georgia Poyner

 Walking on water – Albatross – Penny Beaver

 Water Skink – Panboola – Steve Sass

 Bob Diesbury’s Beach – ???

 Soldier Crab count – Rose- Marie McMaster

 UFO’s  (underwater) – Roby Miller

 Common Correa – Kerry Vance