The "Ding" Darling Wildlife Society has established two annual photography contests. Jay Norwood Darling, the Refuge's namesake, recognized the importance of art to convey powerful messages about the importance of conservation and protecting our wildlife and habitats. Wildlife and outdoor photography is a great way to educate visitors about the beauty of the wildlife that calls the Refuge "home" in hopes to inspire future conservation stewards. Oftentimes, visitors don't get a chance to see wildlife upclose, but when photographers capture a beautiful photo, they create an invaluable connection. "Ding" Darling National Wildlife Refuge offers beautfiul scenery and wildlife sighting opportunities for photographers of any level.
This contest is open to any amateur photographer. Entries must be received between July 15 through September 15, 2023. Entries are judged at the beginning of October and winners will be announced during our annual Art in the Wild festival. Cash prizes are awarded to 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winners. All winning and honorable mention photos are displayed in the Visitor & Education Center for the rest of the year.
Click HERE to see our flyer.
Click HERE to read the rules.
Click HERE to enter the contest.
Click HERE to see the 2022 winners.
Click HERE to see the 2021 winners.
Click HERE to see the 2020 winners.
Click HERE to see the 2019 winners.
Click HERE to see the 2018 winners.
Click HERE to see the 2017 winners.
Click HERE to see the 2016 winners.
Click HERE to see the 2015 winners.
This contest was created in 2013 in rememberance of Theodore Cross, an avid bird photographer who also marched with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., advised presidents on anti-poverty programs, and wrote the influential book Black Capitalism, among others. This is the first photography contest of its kind in the local area and is open to all high school students in Lee, Charlotte, Collier, Glades, and Hendry counties, regardless of skill levels. Submit up to two entries via email between October 1, 2023, and March 1, 2024. Prizes are awarded to first, second, and third place winners.
Click HERE to read the 2024 entry rules.
Click HERE to read the 2024 entry rules (Spanish).
Click HERE to see the 2023 winners.