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Main | Science & Natural History | Third Place

Category: Science and Natural History

First Place
Tyler Anderson/National Post

Second Place
Philip Montgomery/Freelance
"The Slaughter"

Third Place
Kathleen Orlinsky/Freelance

Award of Excellence
Jane Hahn/Freelance
"Guinea Bissau"

Award of Excellence
Ivan Kashinsky/Geo France/Panos Pictures
"Giant Blade"

Award of Excellence
Senthil Kumaran Rajendran/Freelance
"Born for People"


Third Place


Inupiat hunters harvest walrus in the Arctic Ocean near Barrow, Alaska. Hunters looked for ugruk (bearded seal) after the sea ice "went out" but came upon hundreds of walrus instead. Walrus this close to town during this time of year is rare, and due to warming weather. Scientists call Alaska “ground zero” for climate change, and 2014 was the state’s warmest year on record. Alaska is warming faster than anywhere else in the world, with temperatures increasing at twice the rate as the rest of the US. For indigenous people, especially those living in isolated, rural areas, climate change threatens to bring the end to their way of life. Hunting conditions have become dangerous and unpredictable. Whale, walrus, seal, caribou and salmon are dying off and migrating in new patterns, and the communities who depend on them for nutrition, income, and spiritual practices are being pressured in countless ways. Hunting, fishing and foraging for food, known as “subsistence,” is the anchor of culture and economy for the region’s many native groups, some of which are so fragile that only a handful of living elders still speak their native tongues. The survival of entire communities and cultures is at stake.



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