Show us your best nature photography! We’ll go first. | Popular Science

Show us your best nature photography! We’ll go first.

Celebrate Nature Photography Day with the PopSci staff's favorite shots


The monkey treefrog of the Peruvian Amazon is slow. S L O W. Watching it climb, the frog hypnotically slows down time with its cautiously reaching arms. It makes you think: before the invention of the motion picture camera, how would people describe moments that unfold in slow motion?

Tom McNamara

Today is apparently National Nature Photography Day, according to the North American Nature Photography Association (NANPA). We're big fans of the natural world here at PopSci, because from the plains to the mountains, costal beaches to inland lakes, we find that nature never fails to inspire, motivate, and awe us.

A little over 30 years ago, the Harvard biologist E.O. Wilson coined the term Biophilia. Biophilia is a theory to explain what Wilson saw as an innate human tendency to search out connections with nature and other forms of life. Biophilia is why we jazz up our offices with plants, bring cats and dogs into our homes, and spend hours puttering around the garden. It's why we'll pay more for a hotel room with ocean views, and why a neighborhood with big leafy trees seems more welcoming than an endless sea of concrete.

Studies are increasingly showing that spending time in the natural world isn't just fun—it's also good for us. Time spent outdoors has been linked to everything from improving eye development in children, to regulating mood, to increasing fitness, to even helping us heal more quickly after getting sick.

Of course, unless you actually work outside (as a farmer, for example, or perhaps a park ranger), we know just how hard it can be to make it to the great outdoors. The average American spends only seven percent their time in the open air. We spend 87 percent of our time indoors; the remaining 6 percent in cars. National Nature Photography Day is a lovely reminder to get out into nature, and a wonderful time to share some photos of our favorite experiences with you.

So in honor of National Photography day, here are some of the PopSci staff's favorite photos—ones we've taken ourselves during adventures in the natural world. And we want to see your gorgeous nature photos, too. Tag them on Instagram and Twitter with #PopSciLovesNature and we’ll feature our favorites on the site. Note: by using our hashtag, you’re giving us the right to repost your images on our social channels or website.

cane toad

A cane toad in the Peruvian Amazon.

Tom McNamara


Bison in Yellowstone.

Tom McNamara

bear cub

A black bear cub stopped by to say hello in the Berkshires last summer. We stayed inside and kept our distance.

North Carolina

North Carolina.


Dinosaur spotting!

Peacocks in the city

Sometimes, the natural world comes to us—as is the case with peacocks in New York City, which roam the grounds of St. John the Divine Church.

Russ Smith


Doe, a deer.

Russ Smith


A gaggle of geese.

Russ Smith

alaskan railroad

View from the Alaskan railroad—it was an amazing trip!

Blue jay

A serene Blue Jay.


A simple thistle can be so lovely.

George the cat

George helps with gardening (when he’s not knocking Sarah's flower pots off of high shelves).


Crete, Greece.




Robert Treman state park in Ithaca, New York. Ithaca, as they say, is gorges.

Thomas Payne

Camp grill

There's nothing like camping to get you close to nature...

Thomas Payne


...though a sunset can't really be beat, either.

Thomas Payne

Soda Dam

Soda Dam is visible right next to Highway 4 in New Mexico. It's made of calcium deposits, and is still growing to this day.

Albuquerque sunset with moon

An Albuquerque sunset, under the moon.

Sandia Mountains

Another stunning Albuquerque sunset with the Sandia Mountains visible.

Crested Butte

One friendly squirrel (who really wanted my trail mix) in Crested Butte, Colorado.

El Arbo del Tule

El Adbo del Tule in Oaxaca, Mexico.


View from the Pacific Coast Highway.

Peter Sucheski


Another shot from PCH.

Peter Sucheski

Woodstock, NY

Snow covered trees in Woodstock, NY.


Fonts Point Anza Borrego Desert

Barrel Cactus

Barrel Cactus

Mount Hood

Mount Hood, Oregon

Jokulsarlon glacier

Iceland's Jökulsárlón glacier lagoon is a place where you can fall in love with ice over and over again.

Cayman Islands

Stingray in the Cayman Island's

Green iguana

Green iguana, Grand Cayman

Connecticut Pond

A pond in Connecticut.


Flower in Brazil

New Hampshire

My family vacations in this part of New Hampshire every year.

Yosemite mountains


Rattlesnake Mountain

Rattlesnake Mountain

Cuilcagh Mountain

Cuilcagh Mountain trail in Northern Ireland


Different view of the Cuilcagh Mountain Trail


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