A FRESHWATER crocodile, a carpet python and light dancing on Winton dirt beneath the Milky Way have helped capture the essence of the Queensland outback.
The images have also won awards for Mt Isa's Jannico Kelk, Charleville area teen Weston Campbell and Stephen Lippis in the 2019 Outback in Focus Nature Photography Competition.
More than 450 entries were submitted and judges whittled the list to 27 finalists before declaring the best as Queensland continues to celebrate the Year of Outback Tourism.
Mr Kelk's photograph of a freshwater crocodile waiting to feed was named the competition winner.
"I heard stories of wetlands near Mount Isa that act as a crocodile nursery." he said.
"Walking through the flooded areas of Lake Moondarra, this young freshwater crocodile was found searching for frogs and tadpoles hoping to trap his prey with a mouthful of needle-sharp teeth," Mr Kelk said.
Fourteen-year-old Weston found an inland carpet python resting on a fallen tree at night.
"It is odd to find these snakes so far from water, deep in the mulga lands of south-west Queensland," he said.
Mr Lippis' striking image captured a starlit night sky contrasting with the deep redness of the ground.
"This photo was taken around 100km from Winton on a moonless night in June. A short burst of light lit up the red dirt and spinifex to contrast with the Milky-Way." Mr Lippis said.
Senior Park Ranger Sarah Jess hailed the exhibition,which had toured Queensland through October and November before the finalists' images were displayed at old Parliament House in Brisbane.
"It's fantastic to see so many of our parks featured. National parks provide a vital haven for native plants and wildlife and are highly valued by Queenslanders as a place to spend time in the outdoors with family and friends," she said.
Outback Tourism Queensland Association spokesman Bruce Wallace said the outback was a huge landscape with even bigger characters.
"For the first time visitation has hit more than one million visitors," Mr Wallace said.
"Ensuring we continue to value the unique natural assets of our outback, and the many people who work to manage and support those assets, is vitally important to the future of tourism in Outback Queensland."
Fiona Maxwell, of The Pew Charitable Trusts, said the entries included photos of iconic places such as Boodjamulla National Park (Lawn Hill), Cobbold Gorge Nature Refuge and Big Red.