Winter Photo Contest

The Hamilton Conservation Authority and the Urquhart Butterfly Garden invite you to participate in a very special Winter 2021-22 Photo Contest.

The contest encompasses the paths of the Urquhart Butterfly Garden and adjacent Canal Park. The diversity of vegetation offers an inspiring palette for winter photography composition. Large numbers of waterfowl roost in the Desjardins Canal each winter. Early morning or evening visits yield a greater chance to view these birds. Insects may be active on milder days and other wildlife can be spotted by the keen observer.


This year, submissions will be accepted online through Google Forms and not via email as in the past. The entry form is available at the following link: 2021 Winter Photo Contest Entry Form

IMPORTANT: All of your photos entries must be submitted together with one completed form. Kindly wait until your full set of photos are ready before submitting. Repeat submissions will not be considered.

A Google account is required for submitting Google Forms. If you already have a Gmail address this is your Google Account, and you are set. If not, a Google account may be set up using any email address.

If you need any help troubleshooting Google Forms or do not wish to set up a Google account, please contact for assistance.


A key component to the contest is learning about local wildlife! As such, correct identification is required for ALL birds and wildlife species photographed as well as any plant species which are the focal point of a photograph (more details in the Rules below).

An excellent site for bird identification resources can be found on the Ontario Field Ornithologists website:

Insect identification help can be found at You can even upload photos and request an identification.

For Mammal identification be sure to check out

For Plant Identification and
cover the majority of winter plants within the Photo Contest boundary.

If you are still stumped AFTER consulting field guides and online resources, please reach out to the contest email address for an identification hint.

A full set of contest rules, the contest boundary map, and the official contest poster can be found below.

Please direct any questions to the contest email address:

Best of luck!


Contest Opens:  Wed., December 1st, 2021
All submissions due by:    Mon., February 28th, 2022 , 11.59pm
All photos must be taken during the contest period.

Entry Categories:
1 – Birds & Other Wildlife (including insects)
2 – Natural Winter Scenes (including close-ups)

 Age Categories:
1.  Adult – Age 18 and up
2.  Youth – Age 17 and under

First Prize Adult Categories – Annual Pass from Hamilton Conservation Authority
First Prize Youth Under 18 Categories – $50 Cash

Honorary mentions at the discretion of the judges.

Award Announcement: Wed., March 30, 2022

Judges: To be announced


> COVID regulations must be observed with regards to physical distancing (6 ft); masks should be worn when appropriate.

> If the entry is any form of wildlife the species MUST be correctly identified.

> If the entry is a close-up of a tree or plant under ‘Winter Scenes’ identify the subject if possible.

> Photos MUST be taken from the paths of either the Urquhart Butterfly Garden or the paths of Canal Park (including the deck).

> Photos are to be submitted without any digital editing, beyond cropping, adjustments of exposure, sharpness, or minor colour correction.

> Maximum size for each photo is 10MB

> Enter up to 3 photographs per category (maximum 6 total in the two categories).

> One Google Form entry per person (Submit all photos in a single entry; do not enter multiple form submissions.

> Entries to be submitted via Google Forms – A link to the entry form can be found on our website

> Deadline: 11:59 pm February 28th, 2022 – no late submissions will be accepted.

The Urquhart Butterfly Garden and Hamilton Conservation Authority reserve the right to use the photographs (with credit) on their websites or in local news media and social media, to promote the respective properties. Images will remain the copyright of the photographer.

Winter 2021-22 Photo Contest Boundary Map

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