It’s that time of year when various media outlets publish their lists of the best photographs from 2011. The following images are my personal favourites from their lists;
Lightning flashes around the ash plume of the Puyehue-Cordon Caulle volcano chain near Entrelagos, Chile.
Wild horses are herded down from the mountains for the annual Rapa das Bestas (shearing of the beasts) festival in Sabucedo, Spain. Hundreds of wild horses are rounded up from the mountains and directed into the outdoor pen to be trimmed and marked.
Denis Doyle/Getty Images
Brutus, a 5.5m saltwater crocodile, gives a boatload of tourists a moment they’ll never forget on the Adelaide River.
A fisherman arranges a net as his wife paddles their boat in the waters of the Periyar river on the outskirts of the southern Indian city of Kochi on 5 January.Sivaram V/REUTERS
A boy swims along the algae-filled coastline of Qingdao, Shandong province, China.
Mithun, 11, carries soil at a laterite brick mine in Ratnagiri district. He is paid two Indian rupees per brick and carries an average of 100 bricks out of the mine each day.
Space shuttle Endeavour lands at the Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida.
Fans leave condolence notes in memory of Steve Jobs at the Apple store on in San Francisco, California.
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
Antigovernment protesters in Pearl Square in Manama, Bahrain, on Feb. 20.
Lynsey Addario for The New York Times
A girl stands in front of a damaged home on the eastern outskirts of Tripoli on March 25.
Moises Saman for The New York Times
Crowds rehearsed in Juba in preparation for South Sudan’s independence ceremonies. After decades of guerrilla struggles and two million lives lost, the Republic of South Sudan officially split from the north on July 9 and became Africa’s 54th country.
Tyler Hicks/The New York Times
Specialist Michael Miller, age 23 from Melbourne, Florida, sat at the feet of Sergeant Quintana, silent, with a glassy haunted stare.Adam Ferguson—VII for TIME
A girl in isolation for radiation screening looks at her dog through a window in Nihonmatsu, Japan, following the massive earthquake and tsunami.
Shuttle launch. May 16, 2011
Love Your Job
A woman jumps from a burning building during the London riots in August.Amy Weston
A U.S. Army soldier takes five with an Afghan boy during a patrol in Pul-e Alam, a town in Logar province, eastern Afghanistan.
The tall ship Alexander von Humboldt cuts through waves and weather during Kieler Woche.
The links below contain many more images deemed to be some of the best from this past year.
(Disclaimer – some of you may find some of the images unsettling/disturbing)
MSN 2011 in pictures
As Seen From Space