Join 2022 “Year of the Terns” Photo Contest


Official Photo Contest website:
Photo Contest Guidelines PDF: English / Bahasa Indonesia / Chinese [Simplified / Traditional] / Japanese/ Korean
For more in Japanese, visit the Wild Bird Society of Japan (WBSJ) website:
Learn more about the "Year of the Terns" campaign, click here.

EAAFP Year of The Terns Photo Contest

There are over 150 seabird species in the East Asian – Australasian Flyway. They are facing the risk of extinction due to various threats such as incidental bycatch, overfishing, pollution, invasive species, and habitat loss. To raise awareness of seabirds and their conservation, the East Asian – Australasian Flyway Partnership (EAAFP) and the Seabird Working Group designated 2022 as the “Year of the Terns”.

Birdwatchers and photographers are encouraged to join the “Year of the Terns” Photo Contest to discover the beauty of the seabirds, especially terns, and win exciting prizes!


  • The Year of the Terns Photo Contest is open to all participants regardless of age, gender, residence and nationality. Participation in the Year of the Terns Photo Contest is free - there is no registration fee.
  • All entries must involve images photographed in countries within the East Asian-Australasian Flyway Partnership’s region.


Submission Guidelines

1.  Submission deadline: 17 September (Saturday), 11:59 p.m. (KST).

2.  All entries must be uploaded to the Year of the Terns Photo Contest webpage.

3. Photos must be taken from 1 January 2022 through 17 September 2022.

4. There are two categories for entrants to submit entries and each entrant may submit up to 3 photos for the whole contest.

5. All submitted photographs must be in JPEG format, and NOT exceed 5MB in file size. Rename the file name to Photographer's name_MMDD (date of entry), e.g. Kenneth_Lam_0706.

6. Photographs should not be substantially altered with digital means beyond the standard types of edits.

7. No signature, logos, and watermark text should be present on submitted images.


How to win: (Please refer to the Contest guidelines for further details.)

1. The Best Photo of Tern Species

Each entrant may only submit one entry per species. Entrants may, however, submit multiple entries covering different species of terns.

Each entrant needs to write the description of the photo in English within 100 words (e.g., threats to the species, conservation efforts).

2. Tern Photo with the Best Conservation Message

Each entrant may submit a tern photo and message in English within 200 words.

Each photo and its corresponding message should highlight, for example, the threats to seabirds and the marine environment, conservation efforts, or relations between or among seabirds and other creatures in marine ecosystems.


Most Voted Photo

The entrant whose photo receives the most votes on the Year of the Terns Photo Contest webpage will be the winner.


  1. Entrant who submitted all 3 photos to category 1 will not be able to submit additional photos for category 2.
  2. Likes’ on social media are not regarded as valid votes. Only votes on the webpage will be counted.



Please contact us at [email protected]

Please use the hashtag-YearofTerns (#YearofTerns) for promoting the event or calling for votes on the Year of the Terns Photo Contest webpage.




Winners Announcement

[The Best Photo of Tern Species]

Photographer: Haocheng Wang

Species: Chinese Crested Tern

Date of photo taken: 18 August 2022

Location: Jiaozhou Bay, Qingdao, China

[Tern Photo With the Best Conservation Message]

Photographer: Erickson A. Tabayag

Species: Sooty Tern

Date of photo taken: 29 July 2022

Location: Lawak Island, Municipality of Kalayaan, Palawan, The Philippines

[Most Voted Photo]

Photographer: Le Manh Hung

Species: Bridled Tern

Date of photo taken: 18 May 2022

Location: Vietnam

Photo Contest Judges

Meet the "Year of the Terns" Photo Contest Judging Panel:

  Prof. Daniel Roby

Dedicated to Seabird research and conservation for over 25 years, Professor Daniel Roby was enthralled by wildlife from a very young age. Dan has had an illustrious career as an educator and conservationist, recently receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award of the Pacific Seabird Group. He has also been involved in countless projects ranging from studying the long-term effects of the Exxon Valdez oil spill on seabirds in Alaska to becoming the technical advisor for the restoration of the Critically Endangered Chinese Crested Tern in China. Currently retired, Dan is working on editing a book on the conservation and restoration of Oregon’s birds.

  Ms. Angelique Songco

Starting her career in the Armed Forces of the Philippines, later becoming a diving instructor after falling in love with the ocean, Angelique Songco has more than 20 years of experience as a site manager of Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park, an UNESCO World Heritage Site and Flyway Network Site. Referred to as “Mama Ranger,” Angelique is also a member of the EAAFP Seabird Working group and works on the frontier in safeguarding important sites. With Angelique at the helm, Tubbataha received the Platinum Global Ocean Refuge Award – acknowledged as a model site and one of the best-managed marine protected areas in the world.

  Dr. Kiyoaki Ozaki

Dr. Ozaki has fifty years of experience as a wildlife biologist and conservationist working in Japan and Southeast Asian countries, with special interests in Okinawa Rail, Short-tailed Albatross, Japanese Crested Ibis, Roseate and Black-naped Terns. His studies include ecology, migration and conservation biology. He was also responsible for running the bird banding program in Japan between 1995-2017. Dr. Ozaki is the Deputy Director-General of Yamashina Institute for Ornithology since 2010, as the President of the Japanese Bird Banding Association since 2022, and as the President of Ornithological Society of Japan from 2018-2021.

  Ms. Edin Whitehead

As a seabird scientist and conservation photographer in Aotearoa, New Zealand, Edin  “combines science and storytelling to help people explore our natural world.” She works for the Northern New Zealand Seabird Trust as a biologist and photographer. She additionally spends her ‘free’ time in the wilderness, on conservation projects as a volunteer, or out at sea, to inspire people to explore, understand and conserve our earth. Edin is a doctoral researcher at the University of Auckland. She also teaches photography workshops or guides pelagic trips to take people to see seabirds that live in the Aotearoa area.

  Mr. Yat-tung Yu

Yat-tung Yu, a veteran birdwatcher, has always been fascinated by seabirds, particularly terns. He initiated the breeding tern survey in Hong Kong in 1998 and continues to conduct and promote tern ringing locally in Hong Kong and in the EAA Flyway. Despite his efforts, however, terns unfortunately still receive little attention from people in the region. Regardless, he aims to further promote tern research and conservation activities to save them from various threats. Currently, Yat-tung is the Director of the Hong Kong Bird Watching Society and Coordinator of the EAAFP Seabird Working Group.


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