International Festival of Owls Photography Contest

Owls, owls, owls! This photo contest is all about owls!


Photos of wild owls, educational owls, nest box owls, and other owls are welcome.Photos from the outdoor owl photography sessions at previous Festival of Owls events are permitted. Judges will give extra points for wild owls in natural habitats.

Photos must not have watermarks or distinguishing marks or names on them so the judges can evaluate them fairly.
The owls in the photos must not have been baited or lured for the photograph by the photographer or anyone else. If we learn that a submitted photo was obtained by baiting or luring an owl in some way, the photographer will be banned from this competition for life. Don't risk it.
Cropping, sharpening, color correction and exposure manipulation are acceptable. All other editing such as cloning, removal of distractions and composites are not allowed.
Photos must be in digital JPG format, 300 dpi at 8” x 10” only.
The filename must not be the original file name. It should be renamed as follows:

Photographer’s last name, followed by a hyphen and title. (Ex. Smith-Evening Flight.jpg)

Entries must include the following:
The photo’s original metadata
Location (Please include name of site where appropriate. Ex. Provincial park, nature preserve, facility.)
Please indicate if the owl in the photo was either wild or other.
Caption (Details of how the photo was taken, subject matter, etc.)
Photos that have won other photo contests, either online or print are not eligible for submission.

Submission guidelines
The entry fee is US $10 per photo, with a limit of three entries per person. Entries and payment must be received by February 1, 2017 at 11:59 PM US Central Time (CT). Each entry should be sent as a separate email to and include your name, address, phone number, email address, and photo title in the body of the email. Submitted photos are to be attached to the email and not embedded in the email. Entry fees are used to provide the competition prizes, displaying of photos and help the International Owl Center in its mission. Submissions are non-refundable.

Judges will choose 10 finalist photos. Finalists are made into 8x10” prints, matted, and displayed at the International Owl Center during the International Festival of Owls, March 3-5, 2017. At the festival, the public will vote from the top 10 finalists to determine the winners.


First prize: US$200, 2nd prize: US$100, 3rd prize: US$50. Please note that bank or PayPal transfer fees will be deducted from the cash award if the money is transferred to a foreign bank account.


The contest is open to anyone other than board members, employees or volunteers of The International Owl Center, as well as the immediate family (spouse, parents, siblings, and children) and household members of those employees, are not eligible to enter. The contest is international and encourages entries from around the world.

Copyrights & Usage Rights:

Copyright of the images will remain at all times with the photographer.

Use of entries
By entering this contest you are granting the International Owl Center non-exclusive rights to the submitted photos for educational, informational and promotional purposes. You also agree to release the International Owl Center from any and all claims related to the display of, or use of, your submitted photographs.