Snap the Tropics Winners Announced

The Wet Tropics Management Authority is pleased to announce its Snap the Tropics photograph competition winners.

The competition attracted more than 150 entries from local photographers across the Wet Tropics region, featuring everything from creek and waterfall scenes to cassowary and orchid snaps.

Entries were independently judged by acclaimed Cairns nature photographer Mike Prociv.

He said the variety and quality of entries demonstrated a strong appreciation and passion for the Wet Tropics amongst the region’s many talented photographers.

“The standard of entries was very high across the board, and the variety of plants, animals and scenes from across the Wet Tropics made this competition a pleasure to judge,” Mr Prociv said.

“Some of the elements I considered in selecting the winners were technical excellence, how strongly the content represented the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area as well as the degree of difficulty.”

Police officer and former zookeeper Matt Cornish was named winner of the senior category for his photo ‘Southern Cassowary’, a candid snap of a cassowary at Etty Bay near Innisfail.

Mr Cornish said he was drawn to the contrast of the rainforest bird against the ocean background.

“I liked the contrast between the ocean background and the large, foreboding shape of the cassowary in the foreground,” he said.

“For me it sums up the ‘rainforest meets the reef’ scenario, showing how close the Wet Tropics comes to the Great Barrier Reef,” Mr Cornish added.

Junior competition honours went to high school senior Anton Dunne for his ‘Nature Flows’ photograph, depicting rapids at Stoney Creek near Speewah.

The fledgling photographer earns the gong after only a year behind the camera lens.

Given the strong field of submissions, Mr Prociv was compelled to recognise a number of additional photographs as ‘Highly Commended’ and ‘Commended’.

The two major winners will each be presented with their prize—a new GoPro—at the Snap the Tropics Exhibition at the Cairns Botanic Gardens Visitor Centre. The photos will be on public display from 16-22 December. 

Wet Tropics Management Authority acting executive director, Rebecca Lagerroth, thanked all entrants for participating in Snap the Tropics.

“Thank you to each and every entrant for your contribution towards sharing the beauty of the Wet Tropics,” she said.

“We look forward to showing off many more of these photos—and the stories behind them—in the coming weeks.”

The Wet Tropics Management Authority’s 2017 Snap the Tropics competition was sponsored by Cairns Regional Council and the Australian Tropical Herbarium (a joint venture of the CSIRO, Australian and Queensland Governments and James Cook University).


2017 Snap the Tropics results

View the full gallery on Facebook

Winner Senior Category (sponsored by Cairns Regional Council)

Matt Cornish – Southern Cassowary


Winner Junior Category (under-18) / sponsored by James Cook University Tropical Herbarium

Anton Dunne – Nature Flows


Highly commended

Kelvin Marshall – Male Victoria’s Rifle Bird Displaying

Michael Gailer – Sunset at Kahlpalim Rock

Brendan Kelleher – Dinner for Two

Charlotte Hellings – Babinda Boulders



Charlotte Hellings – Stoney Creek

James Boettcher – Great Cormorant in motion


About the Judge: Mike Prociv

Since 1990 Mike Prociv has traversed the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area looking for rare and interesting plants and animals to photograph. His efforts were rewarded when he won The Australian’s wildlife photographic competition in 1994. 

In 2005 he established Mike Prociv Books, publishing a series about the history and natural environment of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area.  Mike’s inspiring and unique images have been used in hundreds of publications and are widely available as postcards, posters and books throughout Australia. His efforts over 20 years were recognised with his Cassowary Award for the Arts in 2009.

The Wet Tropics Management Authority would like to express its sincere thanks to Mike for his time and expertise in judging the Snap the Tropics competition.


Snap the Tropics Winners Announced

Published: 10th Nov 2017

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