Amateur photographers made the most of the deep blue this year in the University of Miami Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science’s annual underwater photo contest.
Among the 650 entries from 18 different countries and 15 states were shots of some of the planet’s most awesome inhabitants, from baby flying fish flapping in the inky black to a school of eerie batfish. The winning shot came from Indonesia: a cleaner shrimp (Periclimenes venustus) perched on the snout of a black-saddle snake eel.
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Honorable mentions — including a moody look at a reef at sunset from underwater — were just as stunning.
Rosenstiel has hosted the contest annually for the last five years, drawing photos from around the globe to highlight the wonders that lurk beneath the seas. Past winners included bug-eyed hammerheads and a Japanese war bonnet in full regalia. The contest is open to all amateur photographers who earn no more than 20 percent of their income from their pictures. The winner receives a Bahamas dive cruise with Blackbeard Cruises. Judges this year included Zoo Miami’s Ron Magill and marine biologists Evan D’Alessandro and Neil Hammerschlag.
Follow Jenny Staletovich on Twitter @jenstaletovich