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General Information

The Nature Photography Contest is held each year to recognize local nature photographers, and is a program of the Migration Celebration, a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service event from the Texas Mid-Coast National Wildlife Complex underwritten by Friends of the Brazoria Wildlife Refuges. The 2018 Photo Contest is coordinated by a Migration Celebration Photo Committee. Nature photography is one of six legislated public uses of national wildlife refuges (NWRs) along with wildlife observation, interpretation, environmental education, hunting, and fishing.

Email: photocontest@migrationcelebration.org

Categories & Rules

For all the categories below, all photos must have been taken in the state of Texas. No photos of domestic, farm, ranch or zoo animals are allowed. No photos of cultivated vegetable garden plants are allowed. It is the intent of this contest to focus on plant and animal species seen in the wild. Photos taken in your backyard of native plants or bird, butterfly, or other species that ‘visit’ are acceptable.

  • Wildlife Vertebrates of Texas: Includes images of mammals, fish, amphibians, reptiles or other vertebrates photographed in their natural habitats. Does not include photos where birds are the primary subject.

  • Wildlife Invertebrates of Texas: Includes images of insects, mollusks, crustaceans, millipedes, worms, or other invertebrates photographed in their natural habitats.

  • Birds of Texas: Includes images of birds photographed in their natural habitats.

  • Plant Life and Fungi of Texas: Includes images of flowers, trees, and other flora photographed in their natural habitats or images of mushrooms or other fungi. Does not include broad landscape or scenery photos.

  • Landscape/Scenery of Texas: Includes images of landscapes, scenery, skyscapes (such as sunsets, sunrise, or night sky), seascapes, or pondscapes in Texas where elements of land, water, sky or other natural elements are the primary subject. Includes panorama photos of a natural area; excludes close-ups or small focal points of nature. Ships, buildings or other man-made structures should not provide the main focus in this category.

  • Nature-themed Photo/Digital Art: Includes nature as art, a single or composite image that has been digitally manipulated using tools such as Photoshop®, an image greatly manipulated with digital filters, HDR photos, etc. The photographer must note the digital techniques used to create the picture. This category is intended to show how the elements of nature can be expanded to create unique photographic images that become art. Note – this is the only category in which significant digital manipulation is allowed.

  • Refuge Photos: Includes images taken on the San Bernard NWR, Brazoria NWR, Big Boggy NWR or one of the units associated with them.

Rules (Summary)

  • Each person may enter up to 9 total entries and no more than 3 entries per category.

  • Prints may be 8”x10”, 8.5”x11”, or 8”x12” and must be permanently mounted on a firm board material such as foam board no larger than the print. See rules exception for panoramas in Landscape category.

  • A completed and signed entry form must accompany entries with an entry fee of $2.50 per photo.

  • Digital jpeg files must be submitted by contest deadline on a flash drive, CD or DVD.

  • Winners will be announced at the annual kickoff dinner; all photos will be displayed at the Migration Celebration. Photos are judged by professional nature photographers.

  • Please click here for full contest rules.

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Date Event Location Details
March 30, 2018

  Entry deadline.
  All entries must be submitted
  by this date.

Drop off or mail your entries to
either of the following addresses:

Migration Celebration Photo Contest
c/o NWR Refuge Complex
2547 County Road 316
Brazoria, Texas 77422

Migration Celebration Photo Contest
c/o Brazosport Area Chamber
300 Abner Jackson Parkway
Lake Jackson, Texas 77566

Note: Individuals at these two locations
cannot answer questions about the contest.

Contest Rules (PDF)

Entry Form (PDF)

April 4, 2018
4pm – 5pm
  An Evening with the Judges Texas AgriLife Extension Office
21017 Country Road 171
Angleton, TX 77515-8903
GPS: 29.175059, -95.405495
All photographers will receive
an invitation to meet the judges
to review and discuss entered
April 13, 2018

  Kickoff Dinner

Freeport RiverPlace
City Park Road at Old River Street
Freeport, TX 77531
GPS 28.9625458, -95.3695732
All entered photos will be exhibited for visitors.
April 21-22, 2018

  Migration Celebration

San Bernard National Wildlife Refuge
6801 County Road 306
Brazoria, TX 77422
GPS: 28.91502, -95.5792093
All entered photos will be exhibited for visitors.

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Archives of Winning Entries from Prior Years

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Migration Celebration is a Texas Mid-Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex event underwritten by Friends of Brazoria Wildlife Refuges.

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service National Wildlife Refuge System San Bernard National Wildlife Refuge Friends of Brazoria Wildlife Refuges

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