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'Ding' Darling amateur photo contest deadline approaching

August 23, 2018
Island Reporter, Captiva Current, Sanibel-Captiva Islander

The deadline for the annual "Ding" Darling Days Amateur Nature Photography Contest is nearing.

All entries must be submitted electronically by Sept. 15.

Sponsored by the "Ding" Darling Wildlife Society-Friends of the Refuge, the competition is held in conjunction with the annual "Ding" Darling Days, which will take place from Oct. 12-14. It is open to non-professional photographers of all ages, and there is a $25 entry fee that covers two submissions.

Article Photos

“Green Heron Raising its Crest,” taken by Ben Vanos, won first place in last year's “Ding” Darling Days Amateur Nature Photography Contest.

A panel of judges will consider a handful of criteria while judging, including originality or creativity, interest and technical excellence, which covers sharpness, lighting, composition and exposure.

Submissions must have been taken at the J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge within the last two years. The photos also should not include the submitter's name or any identifying information.

Photographs that have won awards in previous DDWS contest cannot be submitted. Each photograph must be a JPEG file of at least 3000-by-2400 or four megabytes; panoramic shots are not permitted.

Cash prizes are awarded to the winners, which consist of $250 for first place, $150 for second place, $100 for third place and $25 for honorable mention. Last year, there were 10 honorable mentions.

Entries must be emailed to

The DDWS will announce the winners on Oct. 13 at the Conservation Art Day.

For an entry form and complete rules, visit

For more information, contact 239-472-1100 ext. 256 or

The J.N. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge is at 1 Wildlife Drive, Sanibel.



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