Anyone can snap a photo, but not everybody gets to see a gathering of king penguins or two adult male lions cuddling each other. These are just a few of the majestic moments that are up for the Natural History Museum of London’s Wildlife Photographer of the Year Award for 2018.
This competition, now in its 54th year, accepts submissions from anyone, but the people decide who wins. It’s a people choice award with voting open until February 5. Until June 30, the museum is displaying the 25 contenders in an exhibit—a tiny number compared to the 45,000 submissions from 95 countries. After that ends, one photographer will get to show off with an exhibition dedicated to the winning photo.
“Inspiring audiences to connect with the natural world is at the heart of what we do as a museum, and that’s why we’re so proud to run this competition,” said Ian Owens, the museum’s director of science, in a press release.
The photos vary widely in subject matter, from an orca whale carcass to a greater mouse-eared bat to landscapes like a melting glacier. They each tell their own story, but it’s up to the public to choose which one tells it best. In the meantime, enjoy some of our favorites from the museum’s shortlist.