The photograph of two mice squabbling over few leftover crumbs in London’s underground subway station wins the wildlife photography award from London’s Natural History Museum. The photograph which was taken by Sam Rowley was picked from more than 48,000 images that were submitted.
Titled “Station Squabble”, Rowley’s image was voted for by the public, selecting it from a shortlist of 25 images. Wildlife Photographer of the Year LUMIX People’s Choice Award for Rowley was announced on February 12.
“Everybody knows about the mice on the Underground but I don’t think anyone’s seen them in that light before,” says Rowley. He also admitted that he recieved “strange looks” from the commuters as he laid on the floors of various substations.
Along with his photograph four others also recieved special attention. Those were an image of an orangutan forced to take part in a performance in Bangkok; another of two jaguars holding an anaconda in Brazil, an image of a rhino and a conservation ranger in Kenya and a photo of a group of white arctic reindeer.
Rowley said that he was inspired from a video that his friend shot in which two mice were scrapping with each other. He then spent about a week visiting station platforms in the evening, till early hours of the morning.
“With the majority of the world living in urban areas and cities now, you have to tell the story about how people relate to wildlife,” he said. “Wildlife is fantastic and I think we need to appreciate the smaller and supposedly more difficult animals to live with.”
Michael Dixon, director of the Natural History Museum, said the image of the squabbling mice “provides a fascinating glimpse into how wildlife functions in a human-dominated environment.”
“The mice’s behavior is sculpted by our daily routine, the transport we use and the food we discard,” Dixon expressed in a press release.
“This image reminds us that while we may wander past it everyday, humans are inherently intertwined with the nature that is on our doorstep. I hope it inspires people to think about and value this relationship more.”