MulkearLIFE was overwhelmed by the sheer volume and standard of entries received in the project’s amateur photo competition.
The theme was “exploring biodiversity in the lower Shannon” and MulkearLIFE project manager, Ruairí Ó Conchúir, said they got over 300 entries.
“It was an extremely difficult job to select the winning images,” said Mr Ó Conchúir.
The quality of photographs, and not just the top three, showcases the diversity of nature on our doorstep, he says.
First place in the adults category and the overall competition winner was a shot called “smiling bottlenose dolphin” taken in the Shannon Estuary by Rachel Crowley, Galway.
Second prize went to Michael (Mick) Flanagan, Limerick City, for a wonderful image taken along the Shannon of a curlew. The light, sharpness and subject matter of the image was commended by the judging panel.
Third place Winner was a stunning image entitled “spawn watch’ taken by Joan O’Neill, Bunratty. It captures a spawning common frog.
In the young adults section, first place went to Kayleigh Berry, Annacotty for a wonderful photo named “carved tree trunk”. The image was taken by Kayleigh while out walking in UL. Second place went to Aishling Power, Cappamore with a lovely image entitled “catch of the day”. Eleanor Leonne Bennett finished third with “share a lift home” of two snails.
The overall winner received a new camera valued at over €500, a camera case, 4GB card and a day’s wildlife photography training with a leading professional nature photographer John Murphy.
Minister for Finance, Michael Noonan attended the prize giving ceremony which was part of MulkearLIFE’s 20th birthday celebrations in Annacotty last week.