RULES AND PROCEDURES
SPONSOR: The 2015 Refuge Photo Contest (Contest) is sponsored by the National Wildlife Refuge Association.
National Wildlife Refuge Association
1001 Connecticut Ave, NW, Suite 905
Washington, DC 20036
We also acknowledge the generosity of our photo contest partners: Eagle Optics, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Orvis and Wild Bird Centers for donating prizes.
ELIGIBILITY: The Contest is open to amateur and professional photographers who are legal residents of the fifty (50) United States and the District of Columbia and are 18 years or older at time of entry, except for Contest judges and employees of the Sponsor and of the Contest Partners, their respective parent companies, subsidiaries, affiliates, and advertising, promotion and production agencies and their immediate families and members of their households.
SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS: Each photographer may enter up to five (5) images taken on national wildlife refuges. Images must meet the Submission Requirements to be eligible. Entries not meeting these requirements will not be considered. The Contest reserves the right to request unaltered or RAW images to verify image integrity as it pertains to submission requirements.
- Winning entries will be selected by two rounds of judging. The first round will to be to select approximately 100 images to be included in the National Wildlife Refuge Association’s Refuge Image Library. The second round will result in the selection of the Top Prize winners. Entries will be judged on reflection of theme, technical excellence, visual impact and composition.
- All decisions of the judges on all matters relating to the competition are final.
PRIZE DETAILS: Top prizes will be awarded to the grand prize through fourth place winners. Ten (10) honorable mention winners will receive a prize as well.
- One (1) grand prize: One thousand dollar ($1,000) cash prize
- One (1) second prize: One (1) set Ranger ED 10×32 binoculars courtesy of Eagle Optics (ARV: $500)
- One (1) third prize: One (1) Gale Force backpack courtesy of Orvis and one (1) Seed Saver Birdfeeder courtesy of Wild Bird Centers of America (ARV: $247)
- One (1) fourth prize: One (1) Fly-thru Birdfeeder courtesy of Wild Bird Centers of America (ARV: $75).
- Ten (10) honorable mention prizes: two (two) books from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, featuring Peterson Field Guides, Kaufman Field Guides and other nature books (ARV:$30 – $45)
Total ARV of all Prizes: $2,329. No prize substitution or cash redemption allowed by winners. Sponsor reserves the right to substitute a prize of comparable or greater value.
Each contestant will receive a complimentary one year membership in the National Wildlife Refuge Association.
The Sponsor is not responsible for entries that cannot be processed due to network, hardware or other technical failures or lost e-mails. The Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to close the Contest if it becomes technically corrupted or because of unauthorized human intervention. In the event of cancellation, the Sponsor reserves the right to judge the eligible entries received prior to date of cancellation and award the prizes outlined.
AWARDING OF PRIZES: The determination of the prize winners will be made no later than January 1, 2016. The First through Fourth place prize winners will be notified by e-mail and phone; the remaining prize winners will be notified by e-mail. If a prize winner does not respond by e-mail to claim the prize within 15 days of notification, the prize will be forfeited. If a prize is returned as undeliverable, the prize will be forfeited. At the discretion of the Sponsor, any forfeited prize may be awarded to an alternate winner. No photographer will be eligible for more than one of the Top Prizes described above. However a photographer may have more than one image in the Refuge Association’s Refuge Image Library.
GENERAL: By entering, entrants agree to be bound by these Contest Rules and Procedures, the Terms and Conditions on Use of Images, and the decisions of the Sponsor and judges, which are final and binding on all matters. This Contest is void where prohibited and is subject to all applicable federal, state and local laws. Any applicable taxes are the sole responsibility of the winners.
RELEASE: By participating, entrants release the Sponsor and the contest partners, their parent companies, affiliates, subsidiaries and their agents, respective officers, directors, employees and agents from any and all liability or responsibility for any claim arising in connection with participation in the Contest or any prize awarded.
WINNERS LIST: The Top Prize winning images and the names of the Top Prize winning photographers will be posted on this website prior to January 1, 2016. For the names of the winners (available after January 1, 2016), send a self-addressed, stamped envelope to: Contest Winners, National Wildlife Refuge Association, 1001 Connecticut Avenue NW, Suite 905, Washington, DC 20036. Requests must be received by January 15, 2016. Images selected for inclusion in the NWRA Refuge Image Library will be online by January 1, 2016.
If you have any questions regarding the contest, send us an e-mail.
Images must meet the following requirements to be eligible.
- Photos must be taken at a refuge in the National Wildlife Refuge System or at a refuge-associated Waterfowl Production Area. Visit the Refuge System website or use this map to find a national wildlife refuge near you.
- To be eligible, entries must be submitted in digital format by upload through the refugeassociation.org website. E-mailed entries, or images sent by disk through the mail will not be accepted. Photos may be submitted by upload after 9 a.m. Eastern time September 15, 2015. Uploads must be completed by 9 p.m. Eastern time on November 15, 2015. No late submissions accepted. The Sponsor is not responsible for any circumstances that interfere with timely uploads.
- Photographs will be accepted only from the original photographer who must be the sole author and the owner of the copyright for photos submitted.
- A photographer may submit up to five (5) digital images.
- A photographer may resubmit one (1) of his or her non prize-winning entry from any previous National Wildlife Refuge Association Refuge Photo Contest provided it meets all current contest requirements. (“Prize-winning entries” are not eligible and include: first through fifth place, honorable mention or special recognition images; “non prize-winning entries” are eligible and include: semi-finalist images accepted into the Refuge Image Library and images not selected for any recognition.)
- Each entrant will be asked to provide the following information in order to process the $25 entry fee:
– A Visa or Mastercard Credit Card Number
– Card Verification Number
– Card Expiration Date (Month, Year)
– Card Holder Name – If the name on the Credit Card and/or Billing Address is different than the name of the Photographer please enter Photographer – Name in the Special Instructions Field.
– E-mail address
– Billing Name (First, Last)
– Mailing Street Address
– City, State, Country, Postal Code
– Phone Number
- During photo upload, EVERY entrant will be asked to provide the following information:
– Photographer Name
- During photo upload, EVERY entrant will be asked to provide the following information for EACH image (up to five) submitted:
– Location of image [state, individual refuge name]
– Description, max 200 words (species, scene, activity) and any camera/equipment information you wish to include. Specific camera information and date of photograph will be collected automatically.
- Digital image entries may be color or black and white, horizontal or vertical format.
- Limited image modifications are allowed. The intent and effect of any modification must be to produce a more natural looking and accurate photograph.
– You may submit images taken with a digital camera or images taken with a film-based camera and scanned into a digital format. Your digital image must be of sufficient resolution to meet the criteria required by the Judging Procedures outlined below.
– Digital camera add-on lenses, filters and scopes are permitted without restriction.
– Images may be cropped as long as a rectangular format is maintained. Images may be resized as long as aspect ratio is maintained.
– Watermarks, Signatures or Copyright Notices detract from the natural appearance of photographs and are not permitted on entries for this contest. Remove any such markings prior to submission.
– Do not add any elements or objects that do not exist in the original scene.
- The images must be in the digital format and size outlined in the following Judging Procedures. The Contest reserves the right to request unaltered or RAW image files for the purposes of verifying image integrity meeting the qualifications listed above. Failure to provide unaltered images upon request may result in Contest disqualification.
Judging will be conducted in two rounds.
First (Semi-Final) Round: All eligible entries received by 9 p.m. Eastern time on November 15, 2015 will be screened during the Semi-Final Round. Approximately 100 images will be selected as semi-finalists based on reflection of theme, technical excellence, visual impact, and composition. These images will be included in the Refuge Association’s Refuge Image Library. Images will remain in the Library indefinitely at the Refuge Association’s discretion.
To be considered in the Semi-Final round, images must be submitted by upload through this website at 300 dpi JPEG format with one side at least 3000 pixels (e.g., for an 8×10 inch photograph a minimum of 2400×3000 pixels) and no larger than 12×14 inches (3600×4200 pixels).
Second (Final) Round: The Final Round judging will determine selection for first, second, third, fourth place and honorable mention prizes. A photographer may have more than one image in competition in the Final Round, but no photographer will be eligible for more than one prize among first, second, third, fourth place and honorable mention. The Final Round will be judged on the same criteria listed above.
- Participants must accept the Contest Rules and Procedures (above), including the Terms and Conditions on Use of Submitted Images, before uploading an image for entry in the contest.
Terms and Conditions
Before uploading a photo to our site, carefully read the following terms and conditions for submitted images and their use. If you agree to the terms as they are written, click on the “I accept” button to continue. You must have read, understood and accepted these terms before you can submit an entry.
Photographs will be accepted only from the original photographer.
You must be the sole author and the owner of the copyright in all photos you enter.
Photographers must have sufficient permission of any recognizable persons appearing in the photograph to be able to grant rights to display the photographic submission online or in printed materials.
Photographers retain ownership of all copyrights. However, by submitting an image for entry in this contest, you automatically give the Refuge Association permission and rights to store, display, and use the image, its thumbnails, and your name as the photographer, indefinitely in any media without notification or compensation.
Entries selected for inclusion in the Refuge Association Refuge Image Library will be published online in a searchable image gallery.
A print quality copy of any image submitted to the contest may be used, with appropriate attribution, in publications that promote the mission of the National Wildlife Refuge Association (such as newsletters, reports, or when appropriate, postings with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and/or U.S. Department of the Interior) without further notification. The Refuge Association will not release print quality files for any other use.
Images will remain in the Refuge Association’s Refuge Image Library indefinitely.
If you agree to the terms above and to the Contest Rules and Procedures and would like to enter in the contest by uploading a photo that meets the Submission Requirements, click on the “I Accept” button located on the registration page.