A PICTURE of rare birds on Wearside has won top prize in a national competition.
The Washington Wetland Centre entry was successful in the national finals of the WWT Nikon Photography Competition 2008.
Anthony Daglish, of Wallsend in North Tyneside, who took the picture, triumphed in the digi-scoping category of the awards, presented at WWT London Wetland Centre.
His image of Washington’s record-breaking avocets fought off competition from WWT’s eight other UK wetland centres to be named number one in its category by the judges.
In July 2006 a pair of avocets – which traditionally nest in southern England – hatched two chicks at WWT Washington Wetland Centre, the most northerly ever recorded in the UK. They have since bred and successfully reared young in both 2007 and 2008. Anthony, 34, only took up photography two years ago, after seeing fellow wildlife enthusiasts with cameras in tow.
Now he has his very own top equipment, after being awarded a Nikon Fieldscope ED 82mm with eyepiece – worth more than £700 – as his prize.
He said: “I first got into photography after watching other people doing it. It sparked my curiosity and I thought, ‘I wouldn’t mind a shot at that’.
“I’ve always loved birds and have been a keen birdwatcher for years, so it was the next step to start taking pictures of them.”
Robbie Wilson, of Gretna, won top prize in the national junior category for his photo of three wigeon.