The 20 most popular reader photos of 2016

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The year saw so many remarkable photos of the day submitted by our very talented readers – these are the lovely ones that you liked the most.

We love nature and wildlife ... and we love our readers who take photos of nature and wildlife! Browsing through our Flickr photo pool is like traveling all over the planet, from US National Parks and the rainforests of South America to the wilds of Canada and the vibrant waters of Australia – and everywhere inbetween. What an abundance of beauty this world has to show off!

On the following pages are the photos that were the most seen and shared in 2016. Thank you so much to all of the photographers who have contributed to our group, and thank you to all of you wonderful readers who have made this feature so popular. Enjoy!

First up: Festive seagoing slug proves truth is stranger than fiction

Like the impossible love child of Pokémon and Dr. Seuss, this utterly delightful Bennett's nudibranch (Hypselodoris bennetti) could hardly be more whimsical or beautiful. With those spiral lollipop horns and feathery tuft of gills, this species is typical in color and costume to many of the other 3,000+ known species of nudibranchs. They are some of the most brightly colored animals on the planet.

While these shell-less mollusks live in oceans all over the world, they are most common in shallow, tropical waters; like this one, presumably, that was photographed by John Turnbull in Eastern Australia's Bare Island.

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