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Image of penguins 'hugging' wins photography prize

Tobias Baumgaertner won the Ocean Photography Awards’ community choice prize for the image of the birds in Melbourne.

A PICTURE OF two penguins standing “flipper in flipper” has won a photography award.

Tobias Baumgaertner won the Ocean Photography Awards’ community choice prize for the image, which was taken in St Kilda, Australia.

The photo of two little penguins, also known as fairy penguins, went viral after Mr Baumgaertner posted it on Instagram in March, claiming that the birds had both been widowed.

“These two fairy penguins poised upon a rock overlooking the Melbourne skyline were standing there for hours, flipper in flipper,” Baumgaertner wrote on Instagram.

“A volunteer approached me and told me that the white one was an elderly lady who had lost her partner, and apparently so did the younger male to the left.

Since then they meet regularly, comforting each other and standing together for hours, watching the dancing lights of the nearby city.

The overall winner of the competition, organised by Oceanographic Magazine, was Nadia Aly, who photographed mobula rays off the Baja California Sur in Mexico.

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The six winners won prizes across seven awards, whittled down from more than 3,000 initial competition submissions.

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