[Photo credit: Marc Mol]

Marc Mol beat hundreds of entries to win the wildlife photography contest which was staged by the Society of International Nature and Wildlife Photographers.

Commenting on his winning shot, Marc said: ‘What a nice and welcome surprise. A herd of elephants cast incredible shadows across the dry Luangwa River floodplain as they journey to the refreshing waters of this dwindling river.’

Marc, from Laufen, took the photo from a microlight aircraft in the early morning light over the Luangwa River floodplain in the South Luangwa National Park.

He used a Nikon D3S with a Nikkor 70-200 f/2.8 VR II lens, shooting at a focal length of 70mm.

The photographer added: ‘The looming shadows of the herd, led by the matriarch, are clearer than the animals themselves, who seamlessly blend in the textured patterns of the sand below them.’

The Societies CEO Phil Jones said: ‘The quality of entries for this month’s competition was magnificent, with images ranging from macro shots to hippos bathing in the natural environment.

‘Marc’s image captured the beauty of nature and was a worthy winner.’

Marc won a year’s membership of the Society of International Nature and Wildlife Photographers.