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Awards and Competitions


We offer competitions periodically in both the print edition and online on this page. To enter any online competitions that appear below, click on 'More information' and complete the short form.

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The Birdwatch ID photo guide

We run mystery bird quizzes to accompany our comprehensive ID photo guides. Click here to find the identity of the mystery bird and the winner's name for the last three quizzes.

Opticron HR 66 GA ED Spotting Scope

Closing Date: 31 May 2016


Win an Opticron HR 66 GA ED spotting scope with 18-54x SDLv2 zoom eyepiece worth £988!

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Raptor ID quiz

Frontiers in BirdingClosing Date: 18 Jun 2016

ONE autumn day, you flush a pale bird of prey from the upper branches of a small tree on a coastal heath. This looks like none of the Common Buzzards you’ve seen before, but wary of the chances of an anomalous bird, you make copious notes and take some quick record shots as it flies away, to try and put a name to it.

With the details of the head, legs, tail and upperwing and underwing all duly noted, as well as its overall structure and proportions, you think you may be able to conclusively identify this unusual raptor. What is it?

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Birdwatch Artist of the Year Award

This prestigious award, held in association with the Society of Wildlife Artists (SWLA) and Swarovski Optik, is given to the artist whose work at the SWLA’s annual exhibition The Natural Eye is considered to be the most outstanding. Submissions must be made in accordance with the criteria outlined by the SWLA. The award judges are Dominic Mitchell (Managing Editor, Birdwatch), Bruce Pearson (SWLA), Chris Rose (SWLA), Andrew Stock (SWLA) and Peter Antoniou (Managing Director, Swarovski Optik UK). The winner is announced at the preview of The Natural Eye, which currently takes place in late October, and coverage appears in Birdwatch in the following issue (usually the December edition, published November). The prize is Swarovski optical equipment of the winner’s choice (terms and conditions apply) and a three-year subscription to Birdwatch magazine.

2015 winner

Fishing Frenzy by Jane Smith

Fishing Frenzy

By Jane Smith

This piece was chosen by the panel as exemplifying the many facets that can be found in the best bird art. While not intended as a life-like representation of fishing Northern Gannets, Jane has captured the jizz of the species perfectly as the four adult birds dive into the waves, while summoning a visually pleasing, simplified graphic representation of the dynamic scene, full of action and speed.

Fishing Frenzy was inspired by intimate views of diving gannets seen from a small rowing boat in the Sound of Jura, as both artist and birds fished for mackerel in the sheltered waters there. Jane is a former wildlife filmmaker, now settled on the west coast of Scotland, where she spends as much time painting wildlife as possible.