Selected From Nearly 5000 Entries, Grand-Prize Winner Features Battle Between Bald Eagles

Top Image Will Be Included in May Issue of National Geographic; Honorable Mentions on @NatGeoYourShot InstagramPress Images Available HERE

Photograph by Karthik Subramaniam

WASHINGTON, D.C. (Feb. 17, 2023) – Selected from nearly five thousand entries, National Geographic today revealed the grand-prize winner of the Pictures of the Year photo contest. Tied to the brand’s annual Pictures of the Year list featuring National Geographic’s top images of the year — 118 out of more than 2 million total — the photo contest invited aspiring photographers from across the country to submit their own favorite image captured in 2022, broken into four categories: Nature, People, Places and Animals.

After a rigorous vetting process by a team of seasoned Nat Geo photo editors, Karthik Subramaniam’s “Dance of the Eagles” photo was named grand-prize winner. The software engineer-turned-hobbyist photographer’s winning image depicts a bald eagle battling its fellows for a prime spot on a tree in the Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve in Alaska.

“Every year in November, hundreds of bald eagles gather at Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve near Haines, Alaska, to feast on salmon. I visited there last two Novembers to photograph them,” says Subramaniam. “Studying their behavior patterns helped me anticipate some of their actions. For example, when an eagle drags salmon to a dry spot, other eagles in the area would inevitably fly there to claim their share, and that leads to chaotic action. They also seemed to have some favorite spots to hang out, and usually, commotion ensues when an eagle wants an already occupied spot. This photo was taken during one such commotion.”

In recognition of his work, Subramaniam will have his photo featured in the May issue of National Geographic magazine, alongside Nat Geo’s leading photographers, and receive a six-month digital subscription to the magazine.

Nine additional photos were selected as honorable mention winners: Alex Berger, An Li, Bruce Taubert, Eric Esterle, Rhez Solano, Riten Dharia, Tayfun Coskun, Tihomir Trichkov and W. Kent Williamson. The honorable mention winners will be showcased on National Geographic’s Your Shot Instagram page to more than 6.5 million followers, in addition to receiving a six-month digital subscription to the magazine.

For a list of all ten winners and their winning images, please visit

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