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Author Topic: 2011 FLORIDA INSECT PREDATORS  (Read 4008 times)
JohnKoerner
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« on: August 01, 2011, 10:35:05 PM »
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Carolina Mantid
(Stagmomantis carolina)
Canon EOS 7D | EF 180mm f/3.5L Macro Lens
1/100 | f/10 | ISO 640
Natural Light | Tripod | Remote Switch




Mantidfly
(Climaciella sp.)
Canon EOS 7D | EF 180mm f/3.5L Macro Lens
1/25 | f/10 | ISO 320
Natural Light | Tripod | Remote Switch




Grizzled Mantid
(Gonatista grisea)
Canon EOS 7D | EF 180mm f/3.5L Macro Lens
1/25 | f/11 | ISO 320
Natural Light | Tripod | Remote Switch




Grizzled Mantid
(Gonatista grisea)
Canon EOS 7D | MP-E 65mm f/2.8 1x-5x MacroPhoto
1/25 | f/11 | ISO 320
Natural Light | Tripod | Macro Rail | Remote Switch


C&C Welcome Smiley

Jack
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wolfnowl
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« Reply #1 on: August 02, 2011, 12:56:53 AM »
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All good but I love the last one.  The orchid mantis is my favourite, but I'd only ever seen images.

Mike.
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If your mind is attuned to beauty, you find beauty in everything.
~ Jean Cooke ~


My Flickr site / Random Thoughts and Other Meanderings at M&M's Musings
JohnKoerner
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« Reply #2 on: August 02, 2011, 06:02:34 AM »
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Thanks Mike.

The Orchid Mantid is my favorite too, but alas the importation of any foreign mantis is forbidden in Florida so I will never be able to photograph one unless I leave the state.

Still, there are more than 13 species of mantid endemic to the State of Florida, of which the Grizzled Mantid is the most interesting IMO.

Jack

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JohnKoerner
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« Reply #3 on: August 11, 2011, 06:06:42 AM »
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Ambush Bug (Phymata americana)



Assassin Bug (Sinea sp.)



Assassin Bug (Zelus sp.)



Bee Assassin (Apiomerus crassipes)



Wheel Bug (Arilus cristatus)



Enjoy,

Jack
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Eric Myrvaagnes
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« Reply #4 on: August 11, 2011, 07:05:40 AM »
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You have an amazing menagerie, Jack! I think I'd be afraid to go outdoors with all those assassins lurking behind every bush.  Wink

Eric
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-Eric Myrvaagnes

http://myrvaagnes.com  Visit my website. New images each season.
Justan
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« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2011, 08:59:30 AM »
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More beautiful work!

Are some of these focus stacked images?
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JohnKoerner
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« Reply #6 on: August 11, 2011, 10:10:39 AM »
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You have an amazing menagerie, Jack! I think I'd be afraid to go outdoors with all those assassins lurking behind every bush.  Wink
Eric


Afraid?

Nah, excited at what the next adventure outside will yield is more like it Grin

Jack


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JohnKoerner
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« Reply #7 on: August 11, 2011, 10:14:36 AM »
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More beautiful work!
Are some of these focus stacked images?


Thank you Justan!

As a matter of fact, in my opening thread post, the Mantid-Fly was a 2-image stack and the first Grizzled Mantid was a 6-image stack ... and in this recent post the last shot (a Wheel Bug) was a 3-image stack.

The rest were single-image captures.

Jack


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Philip Weber
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« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2011, 01:31:16 PM »
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Those are beautiful images!

As I live in the Orlando area, I'm wondering where's a great place to find these little guys.

Thanks,
Phil
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louoates
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« Reply #9 on: August 22, 2011, 01:46:08 PM »
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John,
  Extremely fine work! It also set me to wondering if you have buyers for such images. I haven't seen anything like them in galleries or art shows.
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John R
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« Reply #10 on: August 22, 2011, 04:45:50 PM »
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Nice work John. I tried stacking a few flowers and got ghosting, much like an HDR. Not sure if I will bother again.

JMR
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JohnKoerner
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« Reply #11 on: August 22, 2011, 04:51:30 PM »
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Those are beautiful images!
As I live in the Orlando area, I'm wondering where's a great place to find these little guys.
Thanks,
Phil


Thank you Phil.

They're actually all around you Smiley

All you gotta do is get you some plastic containers, and a professional sweep net (and/or make a beat sheet), and go out into your local fields/woods "sweeping" the grasses and "beating" around the bush () ... and you will find them!




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John,
  Extremely fine work! It also set me to wondering if you have buyers for such images. I haven't seen anything like them in galleries or art shows.

Thank you Lou.

No, my work has never been in any galleries or art shows (yet!). I mostly sell these images in calendar form, so far, but my biggest plans involve nature books. I have been systematically filing and organizing my photos for a couple of years now, and plan on putting out "the field guide of field guides" at some point. I have had the good fortune to become friends with Dr. G.B. Edwards (Taxonomic Entomologist & Curator of Arthropods at the Florida Museum of Natural History for nearly 40 years), who has taken a liking to me and my photography, and who has agreed to co-author a book with me on documenting all of the species of jumping spiders in the State of Florida. He is *the* expert in the State of Florida, so his co-authoring a work of this kind will pretty much be my "break" as a nature photographer.

As a matter of fact, 2 months ago, I was part of a little expedition that discovered a new species of jumping spider in the Ocala National Forest, which I recorded in my blog link. I didn't have my macro gear at the time, and did not divulge all of the information or relevant photos, but I have since gone back and taken some exceptional photos of this new species and I am actually working on submitting a full and detailed article, backed by Dr. Edwards' research, to some of the major nature magazines, hopefully for publication.

I also have other nature books in mind, and in the works, and at some point I may eventually give some of the art shows a try too Smiley

So thanks for asking.




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Nice work John. I tried stacking a few flowers and got ghosting, much like an HDR. Not sure if I will bother again.
JMR

Thank you John. What stacking program are you using?

Jack



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« Last Edit: August 22, 2011, 05:50:43 PM by John Koerner » Logged
wolfnowl
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« Reply #12 on: August 22, 2011, 07:10:01 PM »
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Congrats, Jack!  I discovered a new sub-species of Wardius zibethicus once, which thrilled a (very) small subsection of the world's parasitologists...  Grin

Mike.
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If your mind is attuned to beauty, you find beauty in everything.
~ Jean Cooke ~


My Flickr site / Random Thoughts and Other Meanderings at M&M's Musings
JohnKoerner
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« Reply #13 on: August 22, 2011, 07:21:38 PM »
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Well, conrats to you too, then, Mike Grin

And thanks!


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John R
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« Reply #14 on: August 22, 2011, 09:17:22 PM »
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Thank you John. What stacking program are you using?

Jack

I am using a trial version of Zerene Stacker.
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JohnKoerner
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« Reply #15 on: August 22, 2011, 09:57:53 PM »
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I am using a trial version of Zerene Stacker.


I didn't have too much luck with Zerene either (details).

I have had much better luck using Adobe CS5 ...

Jack


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Justan
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« Reply #16 on: August 23, 2011, 08:55:23 AM »
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Thank you Justan!

As a matter of fact, in my opening thread post, the Mantid-Fly was a 2-image stack and the first Grizzled Mantid was a 6-image stack ... and in this recent post the last shot (a Wheel Bug) was a 3-image stack.

The rest were single-image captures.

Jack


Thanks. The “Bee Assassin (Apiomerus crassipes)” is a standout among the other fine work.

There has got to be a lot of challenges to doing this kind of work!!
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JohnKoerner
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« Reply #17 on: August 23, 2011, 11:38:26 AM »
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Thank you very much Justan;

Yes, there are a lot of challenges to macrophotography ... most notable among them is wind and subject movement.

Just a 1/16th-inch movement in an insect/spider is a blurred macro shot ... whereas it wouldn't be noticed in a portrait or landscape shot. Because you're magnifying subjects so much, trying to get the combination of "perfect pose, perfect light, and absolute stillness" out of a nervous insect/spider on a breezy day is often an exercise in frustration and futility ... especially while trying to take advantage of optimal light at 7am, which requires ~ 1/5 shutter speed

My girlfriend always says, "You must have the patience of Job to do this ..."

Cheers!

Jack


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Justan
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« Reply #18 on: August 23, 2011, 11:57:47 AM »
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I've long wondered how one gets the subject to stay still for this kind of photography. Especially for focus stacked images, it sounds as if you have to find and photograph them before they become active? 

Not surprised that a breeze can be frustrating. Even a slight breeze can be punishing when doing digital stitching.
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JohnKoerner
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« Reply #19 on: August 23, 2011, 12:05:40 PM »
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Exactly right, Justan.

Not only does photographing them in the early morning give you the best light, but the cold time of day tends to slow them down quite a bit, on top of which there is far less breeze to worry about.

By 9:30-10:00am, you have harsh light to deal with, more active bugs, and the breezes are kicking in. For this reason, I almost never even bother to photograph anything passed 9am anymore, unless I am using the MP-65mm lens and have a TwinLight Flash on.

However, from an artistic perspective, "flash" macro shots just don't cut it. They're great for detail and a "book" shot, but you can work your PP to death, yet the lighting will never be able to compare to optimal natural light.

Jack


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« Last Edit: August 23, 2011, 12:16:16 PM by John Koerner » Logged
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