The competition has six categories and as well as showcasing the diversity of wildlife and the expertise of the photographers that can be found in the North East it also aims to widen participation in wildlife photography with its young persons and mobile nature category (photos taken with a mobile device).

We had more entries than ever in the mobile category with pictures of  butterflies and snails but the winner was North Tyneside-based Fabian Balezeau, with his photograph of a frog he spotted on a North Shields street.

Steve Ashton, Tees Valley Wildlife Trust’s People and Wildlife Manager and one of the judges said “The photographs entered are of a very high standard and everyone who managed to make it to the short list of around 140 photographs should be congratulated. We the judges have a wide range of experiences and interests and include photographers, wildlife experts as well those from the local press and the sponsors Nestle and have a difficult time choosing the best.”

The Wildlife Portraits section was won by Jonathan Gaunt from Kelso with his picture of nuthatch taken near Wooler in Northumberland.

The competition organisers would like to thank all its sponsors who provide prizes with a total of 19 prizes being awarded.

This year a picture taken on a stroll through a seaside park paid off for Ken Nyberg; his image of a hoverfly on a poppy won the Nature Up Close category of the competition and the overall competition winner with a cash prize of £250. Ken, who is retired and lives in Westoe in South Shields, captured the image as he walked through South Marine Park in the town. He said “I enjoy documenting buildings and scenes around the town and I always keep my eyes open for an opportunity. One of the petals of the poppy had dropped which allowed me to photograph into the flower”.

The prizes were awarded at an event in July at the Great North Museum – Hancock attended by over 350 people. He received his award from BBC Naturalist, entomologist, Dr George McGavin who chose the overall winner.

You can see all the winners at and also at the exhibition at the Great North Museum: Hancock until 12 September – admission free.