The Winners of the 2021 Audubon Photography Awards

Choosing from 2,500 submissions, the 2021 Audubon Photography Awards recently announced the top photographs. This year included submissions from all 50 States and 10 Canadian provinces showcasing the best bird photography in North America.

This year’s Grand Prize went to Carolina Fraser, an amateur photographer, for her amazing photo of a Greater Roadrunner. For her submission, she won a $5,000 prize and will be featured in the Summer edition of Audubon magazine. 

Fraser’s amazing photo was of a Greater Roadrunner taking a dust bath beautifully backlit by the sun. The photo’s technicality, artistic merit, and originality led a panel of expert photographers to award it the best shot of 2021. 

This year included some other amazing photographs and, for the first time in history, the Female Bird Prize. As most budding ornithologists know, female birds are frequently passed over due to their understated plumage. However, Elizabeth Yicheng Shen’s majestic photo of a Northern Harrier in flight shows that female birds can make for fantastic subjects even without the colorful feathers. 

Let’s take a look at some of the winners, and if that’s not enough, the National Audubon Society is releasing the top 100 photos from 2021 here

The 2021 Winners

Grand Prize Winner, Carolina Fraser, “Greater Roadrunner”, Los Novios Ranch, Cotulla, Texas

Professional Award Winner, Steve Jassmore, “Northern Cardinal”, Rural Muskegon County Michigan


Amateur Award Winner, Robin Ulery, “Sandhill Crane”, Johns Lake, Winter Garden, Florida

Fisher Prize, Robin Ulery, “Anna’s Hummingbird”, Patrick Coughlin, Claremont Canyon Regional Preserve, Berkeley, California, USA

Youth Honorable Mention, Robin Ulery, “Canada Goose”, Burnaby Lake, Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada.

Amateur Honorable Mention, Tom Ingram, “Peregrine Falcon”, La Jolla Cove, California, USA

Youth Award Winner, Arav Karighattam, “Purple Sandpiper”, Rockport, Massachusetts, USA

Plants For Birds Award Winner, Shirley Donald, “Red-winged Blackbird and lily pad”, Blue Sea, Quebec, Canada

Plants For Birds Honorable Mention, Karen Boyer Guyton, “Anna’s Hummingbird and cattail”, Quilcene, Washington, USA

Elizabeth Yicheng Shen, “Northern Harrier”, Coyote Hills Regional Park, Fremont, California, USA.

Professional Honorable Mention, Steve Jessmore “Red-tailed Hawk”, Kensington Metropark, Milford Township, Michigan, USA

For more amazing photographs, check out the 2021 minimalist photography award winners and the 2020 drone photography award winners.

Alan Behrens

Leave a Comment