National Geographic Photo Contest 2012 Winners Announced (PHOTOS)

The winning photo in the 2012 National Geographic Photo Contest does not disappoint.

Photographer Ashley Vincent of Chonburi, Thailand, took home this year's top honor: a $10,000 prize and trip to National Geographic's headquarters in Washington, D.C.

The winning photo shows a tigress named Busaba shaking herself dry at Khao Kheow Open Zoo in Thailand. Vincent, who has taken many photos of Busaba before, was looking for a new way to capture the tigress in her habitat when the opportunity presented itself. After going for a dip in her private pool, Busaba climbed out and began shaking the water off her fur coat.

"In all humility I have to say that Mother Nature smiled favorably on me that day," Vincent told National Geographic.

According to National Geographic, photographers from at least 150 countries submitted more than 22,000 photos to this year's contest. Though Vincent won the grand prize, National Geographic recognized winners in other categories, including first place and viewer's choice for "People" and "Places," along with several honorable mentions.

Check out the 2012 winners of the National Geographic photo contest in the gallery below.

(Captions and images by individual photographers, courtesy of National Geographic.)