See the Winner of the 2023 Birds & Blooms Photo Contest

We reveal the 2023 Birds & Blooms Photo Contest grand prize winner. Learn the story behind the unique butterfly and turtle photo.

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2023 Birds & Blooms Photo Contest finalists

Every year, we invite readers to send us their best bird, bloom and butterfly photos for our annual Birds & Blooms Photo Contest.

For our 2023 contest we received thousands of extraordinary entries. Our editorial team narrowed it down to 12 finalists. From there, we turned it over to you to vote for your favorites. We are happy to announce that our readers voted for Conrad Peloquin’s gorgeous and unique photo of a turtle and a butterfly as the grand prize winner.

The Story Behind the Winning Photo

Bnbpc23 Conrad Peloquin[1] CopyCourtesy Conrad Peloquin

In his original contest submission, Conrad said, “While I find this shot special in its own right, it is the story behind the shot that makes it even better. The story begins years earlier. My wife would spot what she deemed to be a good photo, and when alerting me to it, if I didn’t agree, I’d say, ‘Nah, it’s just a bird on a branch… now if it had a butterfly on his nose, that would be a good shot,’ ‘Nah, it’s just an alligator head, nothing special… now if it had a butterfly on his nose, that would be a good shot.’ This fun banter has gone on for years. It is always my nice way of saying that my wife’s visually interesting potential photo is not to my liking.

Conrad continues, “Fast forward to recently. While we were on a river boat in Costa Rica, our guide was pointing out interesting things. At one point he said, ‘There is a turtle on a log up ahead.’ To this, you can guess what I said. Onward 10 minutes, and our guide again said there was a turtle with a butterfly on his nose ahead. My wife and I laughed. He continued to tell us how butterflies land on turtles’ to get salt. Again, we laughed, as we thought he was embellishing. Then, we saw it! We couldn’t believe it. Our guide hadn’t been joking at all. Now, I tell my wife that her uninteresting shots need to have two butterflies on the nose.”

Check out the 2023 Spring Birding Moments video contest winners.

How to Enter Your Photo

Thanks for the thousands of Birds & Blooms readers who submitted entries and voted for their favorite pictures in the 2023 Photo Contest. Here’s some more exciting news! We have even more contests planned, including the 2024 Photo Contest.

Check our contests page for more details on how to enter upcoming and current contests and to read the official rules.

Next, don’t miss the amazing winner of the 2022 Birds & Blooms Photo Contest.

Emily Hannemann
Emily Hannemann is an associate editor for Birds & Blooms Digital. Throughout her years with the publication, she has written multiple articles for print as well as digital, all covering birding and gardening. In her role as associate editor, she is responsible for creating and editing articles on the subject of birding and gardening, as well as putting together Birds & Bloom's daily digital newsletter. After graduating from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a master's degree in magazine journalism and undergraduate degrees in journalism and English, she has more than eight years of experience in the magazine, newspaper, and book industries.