Nature; Nature photography is restricted to the use of the photographic process to depict all branches of natural history, except anthropology and archaeology, in such a fashion that a well-informed person will be able to identify the subject material and certify its honest presentation. The story telling value of a photograph must be weighed more than the pictorial quality while remaining high technical quality.
Human elements shall not be present, except where those human elements are integral parts of the nature story such as nature subjects – such as barn owls or storks – adapted to an environment modified by humans, or where those human elements are in situations depicting natural forces, such as hurricanes or tidal waves. Scientific bands, scientific tags or radio collars on wild animals are permissible.
Photographs of human created hybrid plants, cultivated plants, feral animals, domestic animals, or mounted specimens are not eligible; nor is any form of manipulation that alters the truth of the photographic statement. No techniques that add, relocate, replace, or remove pictorial elements except by cropping are permitted. Techniques that enhance the presentation of the photograph without changing the nature story or the pictorial content, or without altering the content of the original scene, are permitted including HDR, focus stacking and dodging/burning.
Techniques that remove elements added by the camera, such as dust spots, digital noise and film scratches, are allowed. Stitched images are not allowed. All allowed adjustments must appear natural. Colour images can be converted to grey-scale monochrome. Infrared images, either direct-captures or derivations, are not allowed.
Images entered in Nature sections meeting the Nature Photography Definition above may have landscapes, geologic formations, weather phenomena and extant organisms as the primary subject matter. This includes images taken with the subjects in controlled conditions, such as zoos, game farms, botanical gardens, aquariums and any enclosure where the subjects are totally dependent on man for food.