University Centre Sparsholt (UCS) student Casey Dyke has achieved a remarkable feat by clinching two prestigious awards at the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA) Photo Competition 2023.

Casey, who is in her first year of the FdSc Applied Zoo Science course at UCS, was named as a winner for her stunning photos ‘Marwell’s Emerald’ and ‘Jelly Tranquillity’ in the reptile and invertebrate categories correspondingly:

  • Marwell’s Emerald’ is a striking photo of a vivid green female tree monitor which Casey took early in the day in Marwell Zoo’s reptile house, and
  • Jelly Tranquillity’ is an alluring image of nettle jellyfish which Casey captured as they pulsated gracefully passed her through the water in the ‘Tiny Giants’ building at London Zoo.

Casey commented: ‘I am very passionate about capturing the natural beauty of animals in our zoos and aim to show them off in a way that inspires people to want to take care of them and preserve them. It is a huge honour to win two awards from such an important accrediting body.’

The photos were picked from over five hundred entries which were submitted to BIAZA for its 2023 photography competition from zoo and aquarium staff, volunteers, and members of the public.

The spectacular selection of photos, which this year include images of a patrolling lion in the dimming winter light, the silhouette of a shark, and a ball python curiously touching its nose on a hibiscus flower, was judged in relation to a number of metrics, such as composition, originality and image quality.

Dr Jo Judge, CEO of BIAZA remarked: ‘year-on-year, it’s brilliant to see the beauty and character of the natural world encapsulated in our photo competition winners. With so much devastating news about wildlife in decline, it’s important to remind ourselves and others about the diversity of species in need of our protection.’

The professional body BIAZA represents leading zoos and aquariums across Britain and Ireland, supporting them in their work to be at the forefront of conservation, education and research.