Photo Of A Rare Tiger Hugging A Tree Wins Prestigious Award

When photographer Sergey Gorshkov took a picture of a Siberian tiger, he had no idea that he’d end up winning the Wildlife Photographer of the Year award for his shot. But the stunning photo, which features a tiger hugging a tree, has definitely captured the imaginations of many.

The incredible shot was captured at the Leopard National Park located in the heart of Russia’s Far East forests. It shows a female Siberian tiger clutching a tree in her powerful paws as she rubs the tree’s bark with her chin.

Anyone who has a cat knows this is the distinctly feline way of spreading their scent – and that is exactly what this tiger is doing.

This photo is partially special because of the rarity of these majestic big cats. There are very few tigers left in the eastern part of Russia since most have been hunted, leaving their native populations close to extinction. Most of these tigers end up traveling great distances in search of food, which means that getting a picture of one is quite rare.

Gorshkov managed to get this picture by setting up a camera trap that he left in the forest. He rigged the camera up to automatically take a photo whenever a tiger came by. Being a seasoned wildlife photographer, Gorshkov knew this was his best bet for catching a tiger on camera. He left the camera trap there for 10 months, eventually returning in order to retrieve the memory card. And what he found on the memory card ended up proving to be pure gold.

The chair judge of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year award, Roz Kidman-Cox, said to BBC News that Gorshkov’s photograph resembled “an oil painting.” She gushed over the way the light, the colors, and everything about the photo came together perfectly to create something magical. She pointed out that the forestry around the tiger provided the perfect camouflage so it looks like the tiger herself is fading into her surroundings and is a part of the forest floor itself.

Upon further inspection, you can see just what Kidman-Cox is talking about. It really does look like a work of art and he definitely deserved the award for it. What do you think of the photo? Let us know!

Anastasia is an American writer and journalist living in Dublin, Ireland. Her Twitter is @AnastasiaArell5.

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