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In Focus, a News Photo Blog with Alan Taylor, from The Atlantic

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Hurling Turnips at the Jarramplas (18 photos)

Every January on Saint Sebastian Day, the streets of Piornal, Spain, fill with residents armed with turnips, seeking to punish the Jarramplas. The Jarramplas is a devil-like character portrayed by a person wearing a costume made from colorful strips of fabric, a frightening horned mask, and body armor underneath. In a centuries-old tradition, the beast...

Winners of the 2021 Ocean Art Underwater Photo Contest (20 photos)

The judging for the tenth annual Ocean Art Underwater Photo Contest, organized by the Underwater Photography Guide, has finished, and the winning images and photographers have been announced. Photographer Luc Rooman won “Best in Show” for his image of a pair of fighting pike. The organizers of the contest have once more shared some of the winners and...

Photos of the Week: Ice Disk, Snowy Owl, Giant Ichthyosaur (35 photos)

Ducklings at the Pennsylvania Farm Show, a purification ceremony in Japan, a fish-operated vehicle in Israel, preparations for the Beijing Winter Olympics, a ballet performance in Spain, a whale off the California coast, the 2022 Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia, and much more ...

Heavy Rainfall Causes Severe Flooding in Brazil (18 photos)

Heavy rain over the past two months across several Brazilian states has caused flooding that has affected dozens of cities and left thousands homeless. In just the past two weeks, landslides and floods in the state of Minas Gerais reportedly killed at least 12 people. Authorities have issued a number of alerts as they continue to monitor any dams that...

Tracking Cougars to Figure Out Where to Build a Bridge (15 photos)

Highways that cut through wild areas present a daunting barrier for local wildlife. In Washington State, the Olympic Cougar Project—a partnership between a coalition of Native American tribes and the Washington State Department of Transportation—is studying the movements of cougars as they wander through parts of the Olympic Peninsula. Information gathered...

Photos of the Week: New Year, Mammoth Mountain, Sea Scream (35 photos)

Epiphany celebrations in Madrid, anti-government protests in Kazakhstan, the Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia, a December wildfire in Colorado, counting penguins at the London Zoo, sunflower art in China, ski jumping in Austria, ice-covered cargo in Vladivostok, and much more This photo essay previously misidentified the artist Jaume Plensa's nationality....

The Beauty of Earth From Orbit (21 photos)

The International Space Station, continuously occupied for more than 21 years, is presently home to seven crew members. The ISS orbits the Earth at about 17,150 miles per hour—making a trip around the world about every 90 minutes. In recent months, crew members of Expedition 65 and 66 have taken more amazing photographs of our lovely planet, and I wanted...

Starting the Year With an Icy Swim (18 photos)

As the calendar year moved into 2022, winter-swimming enthusiasts took part in multiple events, including Coney Island’s Polar Bear Plunge, Edinburgh’s Loony Dook, and several Christmas Day swims and New Year’s Day dips. Many of these organized events returned this year after being on hiatus last year because of COVID-19 restrictions. Gathered below...

2021: The Year in Volcanic Activity (27 photos)

This has been a big year for the world’s active volcanoes. Out of an estimated 1,500 active volcanoes, about 50 erupt every year, spewing steam, ash, toxic gases, and lava. In 2021, erupting volcanoes included the Cumbre Vieja volcano on the Canary Islands, Mount Nyiragongo in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Fagradalsfjall volcano in Iceland, Pacaya...

Photos of the Week: California Snow, Choir Candles, Magic Tree (35 photos)

Diving in Abu Dhabi, damage from Typhoon Rai in the Philippines, snowboarding in Colorado, preparing to launch the James Webb Space Telescope in French Guiana, Christmas decorations in Thailand, flooding in Malaysia, a Nativity performance in a Slovenian cave, welcoming the winter solstice in Ireland, and much more ...

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