Frustrations, part 10

We’ve had a couple of bluebird nest boxes in the yard for the past two years, attracting occupants each spring, and of course this means I’m attempting to get some decent images. What I’m most after are the newly emerged fledglings, the young whippersnappers just leaving the nest, but while waiting I try for […]

Just a drop, please?

One of those things I had to share. Out early the other morning after an overnight rain, I was examining the azalea bush for interesting stuff, mostly looking for a way to use the rising sun and the raindrops creatively. One of the little mantises was too deep among the leaves to catch the […]

Best of 2012

In recognition of arbitrary numbers assigned to seasonal patterns produced by axial tilt, I present my favorite images taken within the past 31,556,941 seconds, more or less – what some gauche people refer to as a “year.” Also note that these are not the best as determined by popular vote, unless you consider ‘popular’ […]

The days of yore, part two

Okay, so, I had this idea a couple of weeks ago, to feature an image from the summer solstice on the day of the winter solstice – kind of a callback to nicer weather, and a reflection of that little archive list on the sidebar, right? Yeah, so, first, I had to stick to […]

Changing perspective

I just find this amusing. The Girlfriend, like probably 85% of the world’s population, isn’t terribly fond of bugs, most especially not the big ones. But she’s watched me pursue numerous arthropodic subjects, and still finds fascination in the details revealed from macro work.

The net result of this is seen here, what I’m […]

Muttering darkly behind winter’s back

North Carolina winters are usually not too dire, and we can count on some good outdoor weather pretty much throughout, but this doesn’t mean that good photo subjects will be as readily available, so I’m resigned (albeit reluctantly) to the arrival of the slow season. This little gallery is my minor act of defiance.

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This is how it goes

So, are you considering becoming a nature and wildlife photographer? Then let me tell you a little story, but I’ll caution you not to consider this typical.

Last night, while examining the dog fennel plants for photo subjects, I came across a few dead ants and a wavy-lined emerald moth caterpillar trussed up in […]

Back to the beginning

Since I had some business in Raleigh yesterday, I decided afterwards to go back to one of my old haunts, the head of the Neuse River where it spills from Falls Lake. I haven’t been back there in a while, but years ago when I started getting serious about photography, it was one of […]

Trapped!

Sometimes you actually have some cooperation from your subjects, despite their best efforts. Mom paused for a nice profile, even allowing a view of her progenys’ meal, while one of the sprogs smiled (or something) for the camera in the opening of the nest box. It’s all because of clean living and pure thoughts.

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A year goes by fast

Last year about this time, I published a post about my little friends the fishing spiders, whom I call ‘friends’ not because we hang out and hammer down Pepsi together, but because my first photo sale featured one as a subject. Lately, a few have been making themselves obvious, clearly begging to be featured again, so who am I to crush their little spirits? And I say with all honesty, it’s not that I’m avoiding bunny rabbits and ducklings, it’s that I simply have not seen anything cute at all. But still, I know some people don’t want to be greeted with spiders all the time, so I’m including the detailed pics below the break.

A little over a week ago, while staging the photo for the previous post, I espied something that can occasionally be found at the edges of ponds and streams that have plenty of reeds, seen to the left: the molted exoskeleton of a fishing spider. Spiders, and most insects, shed their ‘skins’ as they grow larger, splitting the chitin and squeezing out backwards, and then usually hiding for a while since their new exoskeleton is soft, leaving them much more vulnerable to predators. The translucent molt is left attached to whatever surface was handy, usually mistaken for a dead insect, but it’s instead a clue to be watching for the former owner nearby. When I sat down to take this image, I soon spotted the culprit hiding in the tall grasses. With a stick, I carefully flushed him out, whereupon he panicked and scampered for cover practically underneath me, but then froze and held perfectly still for some really tight closeups.
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