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Common gull: Like the winning image in this category, this photograph uses, to great effect, the contrasts between the soft vulnerability of its natural content against the stark, unyielding structures of man. These common gulls have been nesting among the Gothic columns of this Swedish transformer station for several years, successfully hatching two chicks on each occasion. Indeed, it is often surprising just how successful the more adaptable animals can be, once they have moved into our artificial landscapes. Protected from many of their natural but less brazen enemies, they learn to contend with our noise and waste, even benefit from it. Though grey and sombre, this photograph has a message of hope, a hint of the possibility that, despite the pressures we put on the world about us, life continues. Photographer: Janos lurka (Sweden). Runner-up at the BBC Photo Contest 1998