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Inspiring and Supporting Photographers of Australian Birds

  • Eastern Spinebill (Image ID 31795)

    Eastern Spinebill.   Photographer: Bill Harding

  • Black Swan (Image ID 22770)

    Black Swan.   Photographer: Harry Charalambous

  • Pied Stilt (Image ID 18899)

    Pied Stilt.   Photographer: Paul Jensen

  • Forest Kingfisher (Image ID 33193)

    Forest Kingfisher.   Photographer: Bill Harding

  • Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo (Image ID 40420)

    Red-tailed Black-Cockatoo.   Photographer: Keith Lightbody

Our Photo Competitions are generally open for submission of entries for a period of at least four weeks.  Competitions will be anounced via our Photo Competitions mail-list, and an item on the Home page. 

Several issues have been raised in recent times by both members (via the Forum and Email) and committee members regarding various aspects of the photography competition. As a result, it has been decided to make several changes, and the rules below have been amended in the sections regarding the time limit (increased from 24 months to 3 years), EXIF data (now required), and acceptable post-processing.

The current competition rules are as follows:

  1. A maximum of 4 images per member is permitted in the competition.  Images can be replaced for the duration of the entry period but the maximum number must not be exceeded.
  2. The image dimensions for Entry and Intermediate levels must be at least 1400px in either width or height, and may be up to 1800px in either dimension.  For the Advanced level, images must have one OR both dimensions of 1800px.  Cropped images should not be upsized as this may significantly reduce the image quality.  The maximum image file size is 2560kB.
  3. The images must have been captured within the last 3 years (from the date when submissions for the competition open), and in accordance with BirdLife Photography's ethical guidelines (available here).  Nesting bird images are not permitted.
  4. The Comments field is compulsory; it should describe how the image meets the competition theme, and it must contain the reason why the author has entered the image for the current competition.  This second requirement is often neglected, and will lead to an entry being rejected until a suitable comment is provided.  There is a very useful post in our Forum by Ian Wilson, a former Competition Moderator, on this topic.
  5. Members who feel confident with their bird identification skills are encouraged to enter age and sex of the bird(s) in the image, and any other relevant items, in the Keywords section.  This data will be checked by our moderators.
  6. The Equipment Used field on the submit bird image page is compulsory and must be populated with details of camera & lens make and model, focal length, aperture, exposure, ISO, and exposure compensation.  If other equipment (eg. tripod, fill-flash, hide) was used, these details should also be entered.
  7. Copyright watermarks are NOT permitted in the Current Competition, as submitted images remain anonymous until after voting is completed.
  8. EXIF (Exchangeable Image File) data is camera setting and scene information which is recorded by the camera into the image file. From 16 May 2016 onwards, you must include EXIF data with your photo. For most people, this will not be a problem as EXIF data is automatically attached to the digital image by the camera. However, some people use software which removes the data when saving an image (often when using a "Save for web" option). If you are unsure what to do, please do not hesitate to contact the Photo Competition Coordinator. The minimum requirement for each image is the original date of capture.
  9. Images must meet acceptable post-processing guidelines.  These are defined as:
    • moderate changes to white balance/tone, levels, curves, saturation, contrast, clarity, shadow and highlights, sharpness
    • removal of dust spots and reduction of noise
    • removal of minor distractions (eg twigs), and blurring of background - these changes must be mentioned in the comment or equipment fields
    • cropping
    • minor vignetting
    In-camera adjustments that result in a single image (eg HDR) are permissible so long as the natural integrity of the bird in its environment is not altered. The removal, compositing or relocation of the bird is not allowed. Monochrome is not allowed.
  10. Images submitted to previous competitions, or to the New Images gallery, may be submitted to another competition; if you choose to do this, you must resubmit the image to the competition gallery; images cannot be moved from another existing gallery.

These rules may be modified by the Competition Coordinator for any particular competition; any such change will be notified in the competition announcement.

If you would like any help or advice on how to improve an image, please do not hesitate to contact us.  If you are not sure, feel free to email the image to the Photo Competition Coordinator, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., before submitting your entry.

Note: A final decision on acceptance of an image will always remain with the Photo Competition Coordinator and/or the BLP Committee.


The easiest way to contact us is by emailing us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Our People page, in the About Us section, contains email links to each of the committee members.