"Animal Behavior" Winner: "Common Toad Orgy"
Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition, 2005
Natural History Museum, London, and BBC Wildlife Magazine
Common toads migrate in huge numbers each spring to mate in ponds in Veluwe, Hollanda spectacle that has long fascinated Ruben Smit. To get a toad's-eye view of the underwater orgy, the photographer waded into one of the breeding ponds.
A wide-angle lens allowed Smit to include as much of the action as possible, but he didn't reckon on becoming part of the orgy himself. Mistaking his fingers for females, male toads gripped his hands with grim passion.