Wild rink Alessandro Gruzza NGNP Landscape2Alessandro Gruzza/2016 National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year

When we take a moment to step back and look, the world is stunningly beautiful.

There’s beauty in the flashing movements of animals diving and dodging in a dance for survival, there’s beauty in the sky above a nighttime city, and beauty in the creatures that creep through the edge of a dark wood.

There’s sadness too, and power, and destruction. All these moments and more are represented in the winning photos from the 2016 National Geographic Nature Photographer of the Year photo contest, which we’ve re-published here.

The photos are split into Action, Landscape, Animal, and Environmental categories, with one grand prize winner overall. The photographers’ captions explain the photo and often the search that went into capturing it.