Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Archive for April 11th, 2012

Another tiny fly

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Click for greater size and clarity.

I have to tell you—or maybe in light of other posts* I don’t have to tell you—that there are many kinds of tiny flies out there in nature. The one in this picture was about a quarter or a third of an inch long, and although it didn’t fly away or seem in the least bothered by the close presence of the front end of my macro lens, it kept in almost constant motion on its floral platform. It reminded me of the pump of an oil well as it cranked its body forward and back, up and down, extracting nectar from the disk flowers of this prairie fleabane daisy (Erigeron modestus) rather than petroleum from beneath the ground. The date was March 27, and the location was Pedernales Falls State Park, which is about an hour west of Austin.

For those of you interested in photography, I’ll add that because of the fly’s movements I set the camera at a shutter speed of 1/500 sec. and took dozens of pictures in the hope that some of them would come out with the motion stopped and important parts of the fly in sharp focus. This was among the photographs that met both conditions. Points 1 and 18 in About My Techniques also apply to this picture.

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* Previous posts showing tiny flies have been:

Two syrphid flies

Agarita gets a visitor

Frostweed gets a visitor

Hemipenthes scylla

A pretty fly

Climber on the climbing Clematis

Adieu to camphorweed

© 2012 Steven Schwartzman

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Written by Steve Schwartzman

April 11, 2012 at 5:24 AM

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