14 of the best pics from this year's Comedy Wildlife Awards


Jul. 2 2024, Published 5:07 p.m. ET

Nikon’s annual Comedy Wildlife Awards are, and I know this will be hard to believe, a goldmine of hilarious animal pictures. Coming up on its ninth year, the competition, started by pro photogs Paul Joynson-Hicks and Tom Sullam, delivers the funny in stunning high-quality images of some of earth's most majestic creatures at their least majestic. From hard-rock kangaroos to owls that are just entirely over it, here are our pics for the funniest of the funny.

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Rock and Roo! 🤘

animal wildlife awards
Source: Jason Moore

Air Guitar Roo

This little guy wanted to rock out with his pouch out, and it won Jason Moore the 2023 competition.

"I can't even today..."

According to photographer John Blumenkamp, this Great Gray Owl struck pose after pose as if he knew he was having his picture taken, but between poses, he just couldn't be bothered.

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"Paint me like one of your French girls, Jack."

highly commendeddelphine casimirthe rainforest dandy
Source: Delphine Casimir

The rainforest dandy

“This picture was taken in the monkey forest in Ubud, Bali. This place is a crazy place where monkeys are king!" shares finalist Delphine Casimir of Belgium.

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Look closer, that's not a snowball.

highly commendedjacques poulardsnowball
Source: Jacques Poulard


Apparently, this isn't a snowball awaiting a good hurling at a wayward little brother, this is a white grouse photographed by Jacques Poulard in Spitzberg.

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Okay. Say hello to my little friend!

highly commendeddakota vaccarofox with a cigar
Source: Dakota Vaccaro

Excuse me sir but I think you're a little too young to be smoking.

This little fella looks ready for his close-up in an all-animal reboot of Scarface. Don't pretend you wouldn't watch.

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I should not have ordered the surf-n-turf!

What even is 'market price', I mean really.

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Simba has decided that being king can wait until after this nap.

OK, this looks to be a leopard, but still, that's a solid joke. And also, doesn't "I can't wait to be king" also mean "I can't wait for dad to die"?

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The door is that way!

The bird on the left there is getting the tea, for sure.

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Walk quietly and carry a big stick.

Source: Khurram Khan

The Cabaret Bear

Can I get a banana for scale here, because if I had to guess, I'd say that's a telephone pole. Right?

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Hey, shut up! You distracted me with that camera!

Source: Wendy Kaveney

This wasn't here yesterday.

Wendy Keveney has an amazing eye for comedy photography, but not so much for caption writing. Beside her image of a bird absolutely busting its beak, she simply wrote, "A white-winged dove appearing to fly head-on into a cholla cactus skeleton."

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Boo! Did I scare you?

Australia really came to play in this competition, wracking up a pile of wins with its unique and often charming citizenry. Says photog Lara Mathews, "The mob was enjoying some morning sunshine when this joey decided to get silly and try his hand at boxing."

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Come here, you!

Israeli photographer Tsahi Finkelstein sees a "swamp turtle [that is] surprised and smiles at the dragonfly resting on its nose”, but I see a guy about to get a snack.

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Grace in motion.

underwater category winnerotter kwekotter ballerina
Source: Otter Kwek

Otter Ballerina

I've checked three times and, yes, this delightfully graceful picture of a dancing otter was take by someone named Otter. Singaporean photographer Otter Kwek to be precise, who won the Creatures Under the Sea Award for their image from this daring dance recital.


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