Conservation (Hope) Photographer of the Year
Jules Casey Port Phillip, Australia
Two pale octopuses sit on a pipe. "The story behind this image is one of an ingenious conservation effort," says Casey. "Two divers had the idea to build an artificial reef at Rye in Port Phillip Bay to attract octopuses to the area and provide them with a safe place to reproduce. Virtually overnight, the artificial reef exploded with marine life. The pale octopuses loved their new safe environment and quickly dominated the reef.Several pipes were secured to provide a place for these octopuses to lay their eggs. In my photograph a male approaches a female during their early courting stages. After mating, the female eventually settled in the pipe and laid her eggs."