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Golden monkeys and lounging leopards crowned winners of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2018

'The Golden Couple' was the winning photo and taken by Dutch photographer Marsel van Oosten. Credit: Marsel van Oosten

The winners of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2018 competition have been revealed at the Natural History Museum on Monday.

Dutch photographer Marsel van Oosten won the prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year title for his extraordinary image, The Golden Couple, which frames a pair of golden snub-nosed monkeys in the temperate forest of China’s Qinling Mountains, the only habitat for these endangered primates.

Chair of the judging panel, Roz Kidman Cox, said: "This image is in one sense traditional – a portrait.

"It is a symbolic reminder of the beauty of nature and how impoverished we are becoming as nature is diminished. It is an artwork worthy of hanging in any gallery in the world."

Sixteen-year-old Skye Meaker took the award for Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year with his charming portrait of a leopard waking from sleep in Mashatu Game Reserve, Botswana.

Sixteen-year-old Skye Meaker took the award for Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year. Credit: Skye Meaker

Beating over 45,000 entries from 95 countries, Marsel and Skye’s images will be on shown alongside 98 other nature photographers and photojournalists.

The two images were selected from 19 category winners, depicting the incredible diversity of life on our planet.

"We were captivated by the outstanding quality of the images entered into this year's competition, which spoke volumes to us about the passion for nature shared by talented photographers across the world," said director of science at the Natural History Museum, Ian Owens.

The competition is open to all ages and abilities, with next year's Wildlife Photographer of the Year award opening for entries on October 22.

If you're looking for some inspiration, here are few of the highly commended entrants:

'Cool cat' by Isak Pretorius received highly commended 2018, Wildlife Photographer of the Year. Credit: Isak Pretorius
Looking for love by Tony Wu, USA. Highly commended 2018, Animal Portraits Credit: Tony Wu
Home of the Quoll by David Gallan, highly commended, Animals in their environment. Credit: David Gallan
'Argentine Quickstep' by Darío Podestá, highly commended, Animal portraits. Credit: Darío Podestá
'Cloak of Silk' by Andrés Miguel Domínguez, highly commended, Behaviours Invertebrates. Credit: Andrés Miguel Domínguez
'Bear Territory' by Marc Graf, highly commended, Animals in their environment. Credit: Marc Graf
Tigerland by Emmanuel Rondeau, highly commended, Animals in their environment. Credit: Emmanuel Rondeau