Enchanting sea dragon photo wins new award for SCU scientist

Southern Cross University PHD candidate and Marine Biologist Richard Wylie won the Ecological Society of Australia s 2014 photo competition with his shot of a Weedy Sea Dragon titled Enchanted Dragon.
Southern Cross University PHD candidate and Marine Biologist Richard Wylie won the Ecological Society of Australia s 2014 photo competition with his shot of a Weedy Sea Dragon titled Enchanted Dragon. Richard Wylie

ACCOLADES continue to roll in for Southern Cross University PHD candidate Richard Wylie, with the Marine Biologist announced as a winner in the Ecological Society of Australia's 2014 photo competition.

His photo Enchanted Dragon won the Niches and Hollows section of the competition, he jointly won the Best Portfolio Award with Aaron Greenville, and was also awarded third place in the Overall category for his shot Underwater Landscape.

SCU research student and amateur photographer Richard Wylie.
SCU research student and amateur photographer Richard Wylie. Contributed

Mr Wiley also received a Highly Commended award in the Overall and Niches and Hollows categories for his photo Australian Bush by Night.

"I captured the Enchanted Dragon shot in Victoria, of a Weedy Sea Dragon at Flinders, underneath the pier," he said.

"It's a really fantastic spot to see Weedy Sea Dragons.

"I had actually been trying to get that sort of shot for a long time because that's the feel of it looking up."

Conditions on the day proved perfect to capture the stunning shot, Mr Wiley said.

"There is a resident population of about 30 to 40 Weedy Sea Dragons there but it's usually really murky and really hard to see anything."

A keen diver for 22 years, Mr Wiley's reasonably recent foray into underwater photography keeps bringing continued success, with Getty Images recently approaching him to use his photos.

The wins come on the back of his first place in 2012 National Geographic-La Mer Oceans Photo Contest for his shot Weedy Sea Dragon in the Light, and winning the 2013 Eureka Prize for Science Photography with his photo of a male Weedy Sea Dragon incubating eggs.

Richard Wylie's image,
Richard Wylie's image, "Weedy Seadragon in the Light", won the 2012 National Geographic-La Mer Oceans Photo Contest. Richard Wylie

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