"Animals in their Environment" Winner Wildlife Photographer of the Year Contest
National Geographic photographer Paul Nicklen captured this aerial photo of narwhals taking a breather in an ice hole off Baffin Island in Arctic Canada.
The hunting party of male narwhals had been feeding under the ice, according to the Canadian photographer. When groups come up to breathe, they have to be careful to avoid hitting each other with their long tusks, he said.
Nicklen reported that the sea ice was breaking up when the image was taken. He said the Arctic environment is often as important as its animals to his photography. I am constantly trying to get viewers to care as much about the sea ice as the main subject in the photograph, he said in a statement.