A hamster has to get somewhere fast. It would also like to eat some nuts, if possible. Finally, it comes up with a genius solution.
That solution, miraculously caught on camera by photographer Julian Radd, was the winner of the 2015 Comedy Wildlife Photo Awards.
The awards are the brainchild of Tanzania-based photographers Tom Sullam and Paul Joynson-Hicks, who launched the contest last year.
The pair, along with a panel of judges, runs the competition in partnership with Born Free, a global animal rights group supporting anti-poaching efforts in Tanzania and around the world.
“Instead of drawing attention to wildlife through showing foxes being ripped to pieces by hounds or a bird that’s being slashed open and it’s filled with litter, we just thought, ‘Let’s celebrate the wildlife and raise awareness that way,'” Sullam said.
This year, the group received nearly 3,000 entries. While high-quality photos can be more competitive, the contest ultimately only has one inviolable rule: Be funny.
“The humour scoring outweighs the photographic scoring,” Sullam said.
Here are 15 of this year’s best entries:
1. This cheetah is cracking up.
2. These one-and-a-half owls.
3. This baby elephant is taking a moment to collect itself on the side of the road.
4. This field mouse on stilts.
5. These monkeys are not fighting the feeling.
6. These puffins are going diagonally.
7. This eagle, definitely not trying to figure out how to eat you. Not at all.
8. This chipmunk, slowly realising it’s in over its head.
9. This seal just saying “Hey.”
10. This kangaroo enjoying the comforts of modern society.
11. This fluffy monkey, preparing a vicious sneak attack.
12. This odd couple, a chipmunk and a toad, experiencing a deep sensory connection.
13. These squirrels are squirrelling it real hard.
14. This wasp with a fancier jewellery collection than you.
15. And lastly, this snowy owl, finding its bliss.
Sullam says he hopes the photos, while silly, reinforce the importance of protecting these animals for those who see them.
“It’s going to get the same impact,” he said. “It’s just not negative.”
The winners will be announced Nov. 9, 2016.