FLYING HIGH

Photos: National Geographic’s most beautiful aerial shots of nature are often now made by drone

National Geographic is currently judging their Nature Photographer of the Year contest, taking in entries from professionals and amateurs alike, showcasing scenes of wildlife and natural landscapes.

As entries roll in, the judges are sharing a selection of eye-catching photos. Some of the most breathtaking images are aerial shots taken from planes, helicopters and, ever more frequently, drones.

This point of view and use of drones has grown in popularity in recent years, as technology and price has put aerial photography within the reach of most consumers. Drones have let photographers take advantage of new, exciting perspectives that can turn a flat frozen lake into a Jackson Pollock canvas or allow a viewer to appreciate the subtle gradient of the oceans transitioning to land.

Iceflowers
A drone image of Lake Thiersee in Austria. (Stefan Thaler/National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year)
Infinite Road to Transylvania #6
A winding road leading to Transylvania in Babarunca, Romania. (Calin Stan/National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year)
i can see the sky from here
Two children playing in the clearing of a forest in Sweden. (Anders Andersson/National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year)
A thousand birds
Migratory birds in Northern California, see from an airplane (Jassen Todorov/National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year)
Cable Beach Camel Caravan
A birds eye view of a caravan of camels walking along Cable beach, Australia, at sunset. (Todd Kennedy/National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year)
Above the Polar Bear
A polar bear in Nunavut during the summer of 2017. (Florian Ledoux/National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year)
Thousands of Belugas
Beluga whales in Nunavut during the summer of 2017. (Florian Ledoux/National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year)
The walk of pink flamingos
An aerial view of Aigues-Mortes, in Southern France. (Magali Chesnel/National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year)
Tanzanian Islands - A Bird's Eye
Bongoyo Island, located just off the coast of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. (Nick Johanson/National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year)
Sea and Salt
A pink salt lake in Torrevieja, Spain. (Wellington Rodrigues/National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year)
Birds and shadows
A gaggle of geese in Hungary. (Csaba Daróczi/National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year)
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