This photo of a peekaboo raccoon earned Campbell River photographer Raymond Bennett a third place finish in the BC SPCA’s 2015 Wildlife-in-Focus Photography Contest. This photo was entered in the Backyard Habitats category.

Photo of furry masked visitor earns third place in BC SPCA’s annual Wildlife-in-Focus photography contest

The photo placed Bennett third in the Backyard Habitats Category

A shy raccoon peeks over the edge of backyard fence, his masked face appearing on top of the fence and out from under a hedge.

Captured on camera by Campbell River photographer Raymond Bennett, viewers might feel shy just looking through the lens.

The photo placed Bennett third in the Backyard Habitats Category of the BC SPCA’s 2015 Wildlife-in-Focus Photography Contest.

Contest participants submitted over 600 photos, helping to raise $4,085 for wild animals in need in British Columbia.

“We live in one of the most beautiful places on earth and are surrounded by such a diversity of wild animals throughout the province,” says Dr. Sara Dubois, Chief Scientific Officer of the BC SPCA. “The photos of our local wildlife captured by such a wide range of photographers are absolutely stunning.”

First prize winners in both categories will be featured in the BC SPCA’s spring 2016 Animal Sense magazine and the top three in each category will receive a prize that may include gifts from Kerrisdale Cameras, Vancouver Whale Watch, Vancouver Photowalks, Astrosatchel, LUSH Cosmetics, Starbucks at UBC Tech, or a Wild ARC prize pack.

Visit the BC SPCA online at spca.bc.ca/wildlife-in-focus to view the incredible photos captured by amateur photographers across British Columbia.

The annual contest runs from June through September each year and encourages participants to actively explore green spaces, roadsides, beaches and their own back yards to find striking images of local wildlife living in such close proximity of humans. “Wildlife” includes free-living birds, mammals, amphibians, reptiles, fish and insects but not exotic, feral or domestic animals, or wildlife in zoos or rehabilitation facilities.

Photos from past contest winners can also be viewed anytime.