Local winner in National Zoo & Aquarium Photo Awards

Winner: Cathy Oetegenn
(Last Updated On: June 7, 2018)

Paignton Zoo Environmental Park volunteer Cathy Oetegenn has won a national award for her photography. The announcement was made at the British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquariums (BIAZA) Annual Conference, co-hosted by Shaldon Wildlife Trust and Living Coasts in Torquay.

BIAZA is a conservation, education and scientific wildlife charity and the professional zoo body representing top zoos and aquariums in the UK. Cathy’s photo shows Paignton Zoo’s senior Western lowland gorilla, Pertinax, in reflective mood and appearing to pull on a bell rope. The image, called For whom the bell tolls, won first place in the category Life in a BIAZA Collection.

The BIAZA National Zoo & Aquarium Photo Awards 2018 is sponsored by Wildlife Vets International. The competition is open to staff, members or volunteers of BIAZA zoos and aquariums and is judged by a BIAZA representative and two external judges who assess content, composition and image quality. Noted Devon-based photographer Richard Austin was one of the external judges.

Other winning photographs included a colourful image of one of the UK’s most impressive beetles appearing to do a rendition of the Village People’s infamous YMCA dance; a chilled out chimp; an adorable joey being weighed; and a heart-warming display of family affection with a baby crowned lemur wrapped up in his mother’s embrace.

The results of this year’s competition were announced at a special evening event hosted by Living Coasts in Torquay to mark the start of the BIAZA 2018 Annual Conference and AGM. Dozens of entrieswere submitted with shots conveying life in BIAZA collections, work behind the scenes and wildlife in the wild to highlight the vital conservation work being carried out by the zoo and aquarium community.

Winner: Cathy Oetegenn

2018 Results:

Category 1 – Life in a BIAZA Collection

Runner Up Matthew Lissimore Eye of the tiger

(Sumatran tiger)

West Midlands Safari Park
Runner Up Sian Addison Puppy Love

(European grey wolf)

RZSS Edinburgh Zoo
WINNER Cathy Oetegenn For whom the bell tolls

(Western lowland gorilla)

WWCT Paignton Zoo

Category 2 – Behind the Scenes

Runner Up Sam Ashfield Taking a look inside

(Aldabran tortoise)

Twycross Zoo
WINNER Sian Addison Weighing In

(Queensland koala)

RZSS Edinburgh Zoo

Category 3 – Wildlife in the Wild

Runner Up Sian Addison Ozzie

(Eastern chimpanzee)

RZSS Edinburgh Zoo
WINNER Dave Warren F is For Frounce


Blair Drummond Safari Park



Category 4 – Capturing Hearts and Minds

Runner Up Danni Thompson Eastern white pelican

(Eastern white pelican)

RZSS Edinburgh Zoo
Runner Up Jennifer Scully Crowned cuddle

(Crowned lemur)

Bristol Zoo Gardens
WINNER Beau-Jensen McCubbin Stag Party

(Stag beetle)

Hanwell zoo


Dr Kirsten Pullen, CEO of BIAZA, said, “BIAZA’s annual photo awards highlight not only the incredible animals visitors can view when they come to a BIAZA zoo or aquarium, but behind the scenes and field conservation work being carried out by our members.

“We were delighted with the quality and standard of the entries we received! I would like to congratulate our winners and thank everyone who entered the 2018 competition.”

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