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Winners announced for Wildling Museum's nature photo contest

Winners announced for Wildling Museum's nature photo contest

Winners in both adult and youth categories have been announced for the Wildling Museum of Art & Nature's 2020 photography competition, Critters of the Tri-County.

Photographers of all ages were invited to capture colorful shots of native critters found in the Tri-County region, including land and sea mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and insects.

The 11th biannual nature contest attracted an overwhelming response from 67 artists who submitted more than 250 images over the summer, according to a museum spokesperson.  

From those, first-, second- and third-place winners were named in both youth and adult categories, as well as honorable mentions.

Juror and San Luis Obispo-based professional photographer Nic Stover also selected 28 semifinalists who, in total, produced 46 images.

Adult category winners:

  • Michael Caroff, "Harbor Seal" — First Place
  • Robert Houchens, "Honeybees" — Second Place
  • Jim Jeffrey, "Red Fox, South Hills" — Third Place
  • Honorable mentions: Bob Canepa, "Pelican Portrait"; Michael Caroff, "Great Blue"; Lisa Roeder, "Western Grebes"; Gregory Smith, "Common Raven Gliding By"; Cheryl Strahl, "Breaching with Barnacles"

Youth category winners: 

  • Liam Hampl (age 11), "Jumping Spider" — First Place
  • Isaac Rudnick (age 17), "Family of Quail" — Second Place
  • Jason James (age 15), "Bee Amongst the Lavender" — Third Place
  • Honorable mentions: Jason James (age 15), "Snail in the Undergrowth"; Isaac Rudnick (age 17), "Bee"; Isaac Rudnick (age 17), "Summer Dragonfly"

To view the online exhibition, visit

Lisa André covers local news and lifestyles for Santa Ynez Valley News. 


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