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Thread started 03 Aug 2014 (Sunday) 12:28
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Dragonfly Exuvia

 
Poyatos
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Aug 03, 2014 12:28 |  #1

I was lucky enough to find this wonderfully preserved dragonfly exuvia. I did the obligatory field-shots and then took the exuvia home to do some studio shots where I wanted to experiment with magnification and lighting. The first shot is a natural light which I used as my starting point. I rather like the dramatic lighting and the way the light falls on the top-half of the exuvia helping to give a three-dimensional look.

IMAGE: https://farm4.staticflickr.com/3891/14632120718_a1acc34d98_b.jpg

After the natural light shot I decided to try and bring out a bit more clarity and definition and so experimented with two diffused flashes. After having taken some flash only shots I thought that although they substantially increased sharpness they looked too flat for my licking. A third alternative was to simply augment natural light with flash and this produced an acceptable compromise.

IMAGE: https://farm3.staticflickr.com/2923/14816378954_c14faa3b25_b.jpg

MPE 65mm macro at just over 1x with two diffused flashes. With hindsight I can see that I should have diffused the main flash a tad more.

IMAGE: https://farm3.staticflickr.com/2907/14632146787_ba8dc3165f_b.jpg

The diffusion appears better at 2x on the MPE than on the 100mm macro. This is probably due to the flash heads and lens being closer to the subject.

IMAGE: https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5555/14631971020_afc9411562_b.jpg

Last shot is at 2x

IMAGE: https://farm4.staticflickr.com/3853/14816293764_84981f46ab_b.jpg

Alex
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NSNO
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Aug 03, 2014 12:30 |  #2

Stunning work, each image gets more amazing




  
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mandokid1
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Aug 03, 2014 13:17 |  #3

excellent set alex.


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Poyatos
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Aug 03, 2014 15:21 |  #4

Thanks for your comments, NSNO and Denis - much appreciated.


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LindaB
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Aug 03, 2014 15:52 |  #5

Superb macro pics of it - did you find out which DF emerged from it? Im not very good in the larvae ID side.

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Poyatos
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Aug 03, 2014 19:06 |  #6

Thanks for your comments, Linda. In order to help me identify the dragonfly exuvia I have taken a shot looking directly down onto the head and compared it with the excellent identification diagram in 'Britain's Dragonflies' (p199) field guide by Dave Smallshire and Andy Swash. The nearest characteristics are those of the Aeshna hawkers having large eyes (A about half as long as B); head pentagonal from above with angled rear edge. Hawker larvae are also between 30mm to 40mm in length (my specimen is 40mm). They also have long torpedo shaped-bodies a flat labium with pincers at the front and 6 to 7 antennal segments - just like my specimen.

IMAGE: https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5591/14636039679_a91349a7ac_b.jpg

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Aug 04, 2014 01:08 |  #7

Wonderful series- also esp like #1
Brian v.


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Aug 04, 2014 07:04 |  #8

Amazing set, Alex. The full-body captures look better in color


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LindaB
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Aug 04, 2014 07:40 |  #9

Poyatos wrote in post #17074266 (external link)
Thanks for your comments, Linda. In order to help me identify the dragonfly exuvia I have taken a shot looking directly down onto the head and compared it with the excellent identification diagram in 'Britain's Dragonflies' (p199) field guide by Dave Smallshire and Andy Swash. The nearest characteristics are those of the Aeshna hawkers having large eyes (A about half as long as B); head pentagonal from above with angled rear edge. Hawker larvae are also between 30mm to 40mm in length (my specimen is 40mm). They also have long torpedo shaped-bodies a flat labium with pincers at the front and 6 to 7 antennal segments - just like my specimen.

QUOTED IMAGE

Yep, you should now be able to get down to which one by studying the segments on the abdomen. If you really want a better book that has first class diagrams etc there are the Steve Cham books. I have the first one - Field Guide to the largvae and exuviae of British Dragonflies, Volume 1: Dragonflies.

I dont have time at the moment to study yours (too many other things I am doing at the mo lol), but there are several people out there that can ID it for you.

Are you a member of UK Dragonflies? If not, take a look, its a very friendly community there and plenty of help when needed:
http://www.ukdragonfli​es.com/ (external link)

Linda


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Poyatos
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Aug 04, 2014 08:36 |  #10

Brian and Travis, thank you for your comments.

Linda, a special thank you for your helpful suggestions. I have ordered Steve Cham's book and notice that volumes one and two are now included in the latest edition of his field guide to larvae and exuviae. One of the things I enjoy most about macro is that it opens one's eyes to the beauty of the natural world while also encouraging me to play detective.


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LindaB
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Aug 04, 2014 11:00 |  #11

Poyatos wrote in post #17075145 (external link)
Brian and Travis, thank you for your comments.

Linda, a special thank you for your helpful suggestions. I have ordered Steve Cham's book and notice that volumes one and two are now included in the latest edition of his field guide to larvae and exuviae. One of the things I enjoy most about macro is that it opens one's eyes to the beauty of the natural world while also encouraging me to play detective.

Excellent, you won't be disappointed with the books. Macro certainly opens your eyes to a whole host of things you never knew existed, some are quite bizarre lol

Linda


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Lester ­ Wareham
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Aug 04, 2014 12:20 |  #12

Great shots, I really like these but I also like the B&W treatment in your other thread.


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