A picture of two widowed penguins appearing to comfort each other in Australia has won Oceanographic magazine’s Ocean Photography Awards.

The photo was taken by German photographer Tobias Baumgaertner in Melbourne.

He was told that the two penguins had recently lost their partners and they often appeared to be comforting each other through a warm hug.


The German photographer won the magazine’s Community Choice Award.

“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,” the photographer wrote in an Instagram post.

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

The photographer spent three nights with the penguin colony to capture this very moment.

“Between not being able or allowed to use any lights and the tiny penguins continuously moving, rubbing their flippers on each other’s backs and cleaning one another, it was really hard to get a shot,” he said.

“But I got lucky during one beautiful moment.”