A Powys youngster has become the youngest ever winner of a major RSPCA photography awards thanks to her sensational close-up of a turkey.

Eight-year-old Jamie Smart from Llandrindod Wells took home the top prize in the RSPCA Young Photographer Awards 2023 hosted by wildlife broadcaster Chris Packham.

The winners were announced today (Thursday, December 14) at an award ceremony at the Tower of London, and saw Jamie take home three prizes, including being named the Overall Winner, along with the Portfolio Award and the Pet Portraits Award.

She beat off competition from more than 6,000 entries, impressing judges with the level of detail illuminated on the turkey, called Frederick, the contrast of colours and the dark and brooding background.

The image - which was entered under the ‘Pet Personalities’ category - also caught the judges’ attention as an unusual and thought-provoking image which encourages people to think about turkeys differently.

Winner Jamie, who has her own website Eagle Eyed Girl where she posts David Attenborough-style wildlife videos and stunning photography, said: “I'd definitely like to be a wildlife photographer and presenter when I’m older.

County Times: Curious George, a horse Jamie saw on moorland.Curious George, a horse Jamie saw on moorland. (Image: RSPCA Young Photographer Awards 2023)

"I really want to spread awareness and make a difference. I want to inspire people of all ages to get as many people as possible to help and conserve all these beautiful creatures. 

“I’m amazed and proud of myself to have won and proud of my winning image. The shot of Frederick, our turkey, was taken through the bars of his pen and it looked like he was in prison which was quite appropriate due to the bird flu situation at the time.

"I wanted to show the beauty of his feathers with their iridescent shine, which he loves to display during spring and summer. People don’t often get to see the amazing plumage of turkeys.

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"When the restrictions were lifted he was able to be let out again in our wooded area."

Jamie also won the ‘Pet Portraits’ category with her image of Curious George - a horse she spotted on some moorland, in the ‘Small World’ category she was commended for her caterpillar image, a swan tilting its head into the water also secured her a commended position in the ‘Under 12’ category along with an image of a pheasant sitting on top of a farm gate - which was her personal favourite.

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She also won the ‘portfolio’ category with ‘A Year In a Life of the Turkey’ which as well as featuring the winning image showcased striking close-ups of the turkey’s eyes and feathers.

All entries are judged entirely anonymously which makes Jamie’s success this year even more staggering.

Judge and awards host, Chris Packham said:  “Jamie’s turkey photo really stood out for me, it’s a fantastic image and not just because I could imagine it as an album cover for a punk band.

"Jamie is clearly a very talented young photographer with an exciting future ahead of her and I can’t wait to see what she does next."