Tagged: Texas

Soldier Fly

Soldier Fly
Soldier Fly

Here’s a little soldier fly that I found while out on a walk today. He was really a very, very handsome fellow, with those huge red eyes, and a bright green butt. He was also an extremely cooperative photo subject — I think I accidentally hit him with my camera three or four times before he very lazily flew away … only to land about three inches from where he was originally sitting.

Photo Details
Konica Minolta Pro Automatic 35mm F2.8 Lens reverse-mounted on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/16, 1/100 sec
Diffuse flash
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Hey, look at that, I actually changed the aperture on that lens. This is a historic occasion. And probably calls for beer.

I just really like paper wasps, okay?

Don’t judge me.

Common Paper Wasp
Common Paper Wasp

I find this picture incredibly hilarious. No, wasp, stinging the paper won’t actually solve your problems. In fact, since your problems are mostly that some large, obnoxious primate has captured you, shoved you in a box and keeps flashing bright lights in your face, it might actually make them worse, because the large, obnoxious primate finds your behavior charming.

Polistes exclamans, at least I think so … feel free to correct me if she’s really something else.

I am not sure what it says about my apartment that this is the fourth species of paper wasp that I’ve seen outside. (Polistes dominula is coming to a blog near you, as soon as I can catch one!) Possibly it says that my apartment is awesome. Or full of caterpillars.

Photo Details
Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro Lens with 36mm extension tube on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/18, 1/100 sec
Diffuse flash in whitebox
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Greenbottle Fly

So, if you were to look through the memory cards on my camera, you would probably be shocked at how many really terrible out of focus photos there are on that card. And after that, you would probably be appalled by the sheer number of pictures that I have taken of flies. This is because flies are everywhere, and I generally have no problem sneaking up on them to take their picture. I just never really do anything with these photos, because they all look pretty much the same to me (please do not hate me, dipteran people!) and I cannot really be bothered. (Oh god, fly people are going to CRUCIFY me.)

But, on days when I have nothing better to post, I have PLENTY of fly pictures to go around.

Blow Fly
Blow Fly

Okay, they are kind-of cute.

Photo Details
Konica Minolta Pro Automatic 35mm F2.8 Lens reverse-mounted on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/22, 1/100 sec
Diffuse flash
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

It’s Finally Happened…

… there is now a large, annoyed wasp loose in my apartment. I probably need to catch her before the kitten does, since the kitten (a) does not know about wasp stings and (b) probably won’t be gentle with my photo subject.

Paper Wasp
Paper Wasp

I think that this is Polistes metricus, although it could be P. fuscatus. I don’t know. It’s a big damn red wasp. That my kitten wants to eat.

Photo Details

Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro Lens on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/14, 1/125 sec
Diffuse flash in whitebox
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Baby Hoppers

Do you like grasshoppers? Of course you do. If you’re not sure whether or not you like grasshoppers, allow me to prove that you do.

1) Awesome people like grasshoppers.
2) The people who read my blog are awesome.

3) Therefore, you, blog reader, must love grasshoppers.
Q.E.D.

So, here are some baby hoppers to make your day better.

Grasshopper Nymph
Grasshopper Nymph

Pretty sure this is a spur-throated grasshopper (Melanoplus), but I could be wrong. There are a lot of grasshoppers in Texas.

Grasshopper Nymph
Grasshopper Nymph

And this is some kind of slant-faced grasshopper. They are the cutest.

I would have caught more grasshoppers, but the flora of Texas is evil, and had different ideas

My pants. Covered in burrs.
My pants. Covered in burrs.

Also, I’m doing some paleo fieldwork in Nebraska this weekend, so expect gratuitous photo spam.

Photo Details

Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro Lens on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/22, 1/160 sec
Diffuse flash in whitebox
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

What do we say to the god of bee stings?

Long-Horned Bee
Long-Horned Bee

Not today.

Okay, lame references to Game of Thrones aside, does anyone know what this bee is? I tried keying it out, but was very quickly intimidated by words like “fovea” and “vertex” … so I gave up to go make myself tea.

EDIT: John Ascher over at BugGuide IDed this for me as the long-horned bee Svastra obliqua. Have I gushed about how awesome BugGuide is? Because it really, really is.

Photo Details

Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro Lens on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/20, 1/160 sec
Diffuse flash in whitebox
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Baby Salticid

I am pretty sure that this jumping spider spiderling (or maybe just a jumping spiderling?) is the smallest thing I’ve ever taken a picture of.

Jumping Spider
Jumping Spider

Photo Details

Konica Minolta Pro Automatic 35mm F2.8 Lens reverse-mounted with 36mm extension tube on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/22, 1/160 sec
Diffuse flash in whitebox
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Anole Mood Ring

So, people often accuse reptiles of being unexpressive, emotionless animals, but I think that’s pretty unfair. For example, I found a beautiful, adult male green anole basking outside my apartment, and being a terrible, cruel person, decided to capture him and bring him indoors for a photoshoot. He was not happy.

Anole: Stressed
Anole: Stressed

I felt pretty bad, so I gave him a nice perch, put a heat lamp next to the white box, and left him alone for about fifteen minutes until he could calm down.

Anole: Calm
Anole: Calm

Then the cat walked by.

Anole: Threat Display
Anole: Threat Display

Call me crazy, but I don’t think that he has any trouble expressing his emotions.


Photo Details

Stressed
Canon EF 50mm f/1.4 USM Lens on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/18, 1/125 sec
Diffuse flash in whitebox
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Calm
Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro Lens on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/16, 1/160 sec
Diffuse flash in whitebox
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Threat Display
Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro Lens on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/18, 1/160 sec
Diffuse flash in whitebox
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

New Reflector

I spent most of yesterday making myself a small reflector out of cardboard, white paper and aluminum foil (I am super, super cheap) and spent today testing it, first on a very perplexed kitten, and then outside on an actual insect.

River
River

Ah, the glare of reflected light in tiny kitten eyes. So charming.

Photo Details
Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro Lens on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/11, 1/160 sec
Diffuse Flash
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Weevil
Weevil

I think it works a little better on small things.

Photo Details
Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro Lens on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/16, 1/125 sec
Diffuse Flash
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5

Paper Wasp

I think my whitebox is making me stupid.

Paper Wasp
Paper Wasp

I’m fairly certain that this is the Apache Wasp, Polistes apachus, but I’d welcome any alternate IDs.


Photo Details
Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro Lens on a Canon T1i Rebel
ISO 100 at f/16, 1/100 sec
Diffuse flash in whitebox
Image editing in Adobe Photoshop CS5