“Still life in oil” by Daniel Beltrá, winner of the 2011 Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year award.
“Crude oil trickles off the feathers of the rescued brown pelicans, turning the white lining sheets into a sticky, stinking mess. The pelicans are going through the first stage of cleaning at a temporary bird-rescue facility in Fort Jackson, Louisiana. They’ve already been sprayed with a light oil to break up the heavy crude trapped in their feathers, which has turned their normally pale heads orange and their brown and grey feathers mahogany.” Canon EOS 5D Mark II + 35mm f1.4 lens at 35mm; 1/30 sec at f4 (-0.7 e/v); ISO 800.
Also see Daniel’s incredibly powerful photojournalism series “The price of oil” about BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill here.
Interestingly, the first place photo in the youth division was also of seabirds, in this case oystercatchers, by Mateusz Piesiak: