Monday, August 28, 2017

Photo Shoot with a Lance-tipped Darner

Those of us that shoot a lot of dragons know how challenging it can be to get darners. As a family, the mosaic darners are strong, active flyers. On Saturday afternoon I went over to one of my local open spaces that has an open field nestled in a wooded area. There was a swarm of Common Green Darners and Lance-tipped Darners flying high above the field. As I started walking through the grass, I started to spook up some darners. I first thought that it was a fluke, but after the third darner, I began to change my strategy and started to actively look for darners hanging in the low grass. This is no easy task, but with careful movement, I could start to spot them. I got into one spot and flushed up two, then I spotted three! Hmmm…which should I go after first?

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

I decided to work with this bug first…until…

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

I spotted a fourth. I have many Common Green Darner images, so I decided to go for the this bug.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

My experience with dragonflies is that they will flush if they are startled, but if they see you and realize that you do not pose a threat, they will be somewhat approachable. I don’t particularly “stalk” my dragons, but rather just hang about a bit and “act natural” which for me is set up my gear, look over the scene and plan the shot. Once the dragon gets used to me, I sometimes can get in a good photo shoot.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

The photo above and below are actually different photos. I spent a good 10 minutes with this bug. These are relatively uncropped images, except for sizing to 8X10. I was using a 300mm lens at 10 feet. Any closer and the bug wouldn’t fit in the frame. I could have gotten in closer, in fact, I as able to reach in and pluck some grasses that were obstructing the shots.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

I was able to walk around to get a side shot to get the field marks for idintification.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

So is all this easy? Well, yes and no. Although I knew that there were subject in the field, from the time that I decided to go after these targets to the time I got my first frame was about 20 minutes of searching. It takes a bit of determination however the chance to work with these animals is well worth the effort.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

This may make a nice summertime shot for next year’s calendar.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Butterflies

Today I have three butterflies for you .

Northern Perly-eye

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Cabbage White

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

SPicebush Swallowtail

©2017 Steve Borichevsky©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Monday, August 21, 2017

The Elderberry Bush

The elderberry bush in the yard had a good crop of berries. This brought in a lot of birds. We think of Eastern Kingbirds as master flycatchers, which they are, but they were not averse to feasting on the elderberries.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky©2017 Steve Borichevsky©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Cedar Waxwings are fruit eaters, so naturally we expect to see them happily eating elderberries.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Here is an adult Gray Catbird.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

This juvenile is exposing his pin feathers to the sun while picking a berry.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Slaty Skimmers by the pond

Here are two absolutely perfect Slaty Skimmers. The first is the male and the second is the female. Below is a Lilypad Forktail that was on a near by lilypad.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky©2017 Steve Borichevsky©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Lilypad Forktail

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Perfect Exposures

There wouldn’t be much fun if all scenes were evenly lit. Here are three dragonflies with challenging exposure problems.

Male Eastern Pondhawk

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Female Meadowhawk

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

When I saw this Male Slaty Skimmer against a bright background, I just had to take up the challenge.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Lunchtime Dragons

I took a little walk during lunch and found some happy dragonflies.

Male Blue Dasher

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Female Meadowhawk

©2017 Steve Borichevsky©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Male White-faced Meadowhawk

©2017 Steve Borichevsky©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Slender Spreadwing

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Two Unusual Dragonflies

I saw this dragonfly for the first time on 7 July 2017 in Florida. It was hunting in the vegetation along the edge of the water. I could see that it had some unusual coloration. There was no chance for a shot, sometimes you just have to let it go.

I went back the next day and was surprised to see that it was hanging about by a Roseate Skimmer. I was able to take a few shots. This is a Two-striped Forceptail.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky©2017 Steve Borichevsky©2017 Steve Borichevsky

Back in Massachusetts, last Sunday I saw dragon flying and it had an unusual shape. I was hoping for a shot. It landed about 50 feet off my port side and the game was afoot! I found him settled on some leaves. It was indeed an unusual dragon. This is a Black-shouldered Spinyleg.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

This was one of the most professional dragonfly models I have worked with in a long time. He spied something tasty in the air and was off like a shot! I’m used to dragons taking off after a snack but this one was like a bullet! And then he landed putting the sun to my back and struck a nice pose.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

He took off like a shot again and return to the same leaf, but in another perfect pose.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

He then took off like a shot again, I’ve never seen dragon fly as fast as this one. He landed a little ways away. Again, a perfet pose!

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

And whoosh! He was off again and landed near by. Perfect again!

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

One more attack and a back. This was my last shot and he was gone.

©2017 Steve Borichevsky

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