Every year, the California Academy of Sciences’ renowned BigPicture Photography Competition celebrates some of the world’s best photographers and the year’s most striking images. Judged by an elite panel of nature and conservation photography experts, the competition’s winning images highlight Earth’s biodiversity and illustrate the threats our planet faces. Each photo, in its own way, inspires viewers to protect and conserve the remarkable diversity of life on Earth. Below, we present some of our personal favorites from this year’s competition.

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