The Way I See Things



I spent a couple of hours in Trench Wood this afternoon, and although I didn't find much to trouble the shutter count, I came home more than happy with the photos my few subjects allowed me.

Best of the day was this female Common Darter, basking on a sunny tree trunk while delicately chewing someone. I find Common Darters relatively approachable, especially towards the end of their season, so I walked towards her quite confidently, and she stayed beautifully calm and allowed me to within a few inches of her. After I'd taken my photos I thanked her politely, then backed up a few careful steps before turning and walking away, to make sure that I didn't startle her and our encounter ended as relaxedly as it had begun.

By the way, on the subject of politeness, I saw some comments on social media the other day, along the lines of "Oh, that's sooo sweet!" about a macro photographer who was filmed thanking his subjects, and they made me quite irritated. I've always done this, and I don't intend to stop however amusing other people may find it, because it's a gesture of respect towards a wild creature that's allowed me to share its life-or-death existence for a short while.

Tonight's extra is a pair of alder spittlebugs (Aphrophora alni) in cop. I'd already found a lone specimen, on an aspen sapling at the edge of a glade, but lost it by failing to set up my shot quickly enough: it sprang away with a force that shook the sapling, never to be seen again. So when I saw this pair I worked fast, trying to get some images before their natural disinclination to be loomed over by a potential predator could dampen their ardour. A certain amount of pushmi-pullyu behaviour went on along the twig, as they failed to agree who was in charge of leading whom to cover, and I took advantage of the confusion and got my shots. When I thanked them and left they were still coupled.

Before I go, may I remind you that Tiny Tuesday has now rolled round again. I hope you'll join the challenge this week, by taking a close-up photo of some small thing or other, and tagging your post TT385. I'll look through all the entries and award my hearts and HMs on Thursday.

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