BMC Ecology Image Competition Announcement 2018


The closing date for entries has been extended to 15th October 2018

We are delighted to announce that the 6th annual BMC Ecology image competition launches today! We are calling for ecologists around the world to submit their images.

We created the competition as a chance for ecologists to share their research and photographic skills, and celebrate the intersection of art and science.

The three previous competitions (the overall winners of which can be seen on this page) have certainly achieved this, providing us with superb images demonstrating the complex web of interactions that ecologists are dedicated to unraveling.

The winning images from previous years have attracted substantial attention not just from ecologists but also from the wider public, featuring in international media outlets such as the Guardian, IFL Science, Scientific American, and the BBC.

Judging the competition will be the BMC Ecology Section Editors, who are experts in biodiversity, ecosystems, ecological models, and behavioral ecology. The overall winner will be chosen by a special guest judge, whose identity will be announced later in the year.

The overall winner will receive a cash prize of £250 (~ €300/$325), while the runner-up will receive £100 (€125/$150). Additional prizes of £50 (€65/$75) will be awarded for those images selected by the Section Editors that best represent their section.

2016’s overall winner by Davide Gaglio, the striking landscape of the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park during sunrise.
Davide Gaglio

How to submit

Anyone who is affiliated with a research institution can enter. All entrants should agree to release the images under the Creative Commons license , which states that the images can be freely shared, reused and modified as long as they are properly attributed to the photographer. BMC does not retain the rights to the images. And each entrant can submit five images at most to this competition. We ask that entries be submitted to one of the five categories listed below and that they depict a specific ecological interaction.

  • Behavioral and physiological ecology
  • Conservation ecology and biodiversity research
  • Community, population, and macroecology
  • Landscape ecology and ecosystems
  • Theoretical ecology and models

We will consider all images from photos to data visualizations, or a mixture of both – as long as they are striking, meaningful, and creative.

Please email your images to with the subject line “BMC Ecology Image Competition”.

The following information must be included:




Description (Max. 300 words):

File type:

Data attribution (if applicable):


Contact details of Research Institute:

I agree to release this image under a Creative Commons License:  Y/N

Twitter handle (optional):

Please attach your image entry to your email. All images must conform to the following criteria:

  • A minimum 300dpi (1831 x 1831 pixels for a raster image).
  • In one of the allowable formats – EPS, PDF (for line drawings), PNG, TIFF,  JPEG, BMP, DOC, PPT [Please note that it is the responsibility of the author(s) to obtain permission from the copyright holder to reproduce figures or tables that have previously been published elsewhere.]

In line with our policies on open access, entry to the competition implies release of the images under a creative commons license, to allow file sharing with proper attribution.

We’ll be posting regular updates on the competition throughout the coming months, so don’t forget to keep up to date by reading our blog or by following us on Twitter @BMC_series

Closing date for entries is 15th October 2018 (this has been extended from 15th September 2018), with winners being announced in January.

Good luck!

2015’s overall winner, by Mohamed Shebl, “Palestinian sunbird female forages on Echinops sp.”
Mohamed Shebl

Use the links below to see a full list of winning and highly commended images from the past four years:

2013 competition

2014 competition

2015 competition

2016 competition

2017 competition

View the latest posts on the BMC Series blog homepage


Abhijeet Bayani

I wish to contribute some images for this competition, but I have a few queries as follows:
1) Can a word document be sent for the information required for the images along with the email of photos?
2) What information is required under the legend “Name” and “Image”?
3) Can the exif data be put under “Data Attribution” or is it restricted to only Category of “Theoretical Ecology and Models”?
4) Is there any specific format for naming the images?

Ying Lou

Thank you for your interest to this competition.
1) Please feel free to send a word document along with the email of photos. We would like to know a story behind the image.
2) Please provide your full name under “Name” and the image title under “Image”.
3) Yes. The data can be put under “Data Attribution”.
4) There is no specific format for naming the image.

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