Dragonflies and Damselflies

Maximilian

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... I still only managed 1/100, which in my old hands is approaching my limit! I could have opened it up more as I used f5.6 for better dof. ...
I would have done it exactly the same way in that situation. Thinking about having ISO4000 today and only complaining about some nise is fantastic.
1/100 is already challanging for the fine details of dragonflies. Khudos for a steady hand and HIS of the macro.
f/5.6 with macro closeup delivers such a shallow DOF that I would have thought more about going Av with f/8, fixing ISO at 2000 to 2500 and firing some bursts of pics hoping that the HIS would get at least one sharp ;)

That's one of the advantages of digital photography over film that I must get more used to: 10 pics more are only more time in post to decide and delete ;)
 
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koenkooi

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During a school run I noticed a few dragonflies flying over the pond next to the bike lane, so I returned with the RP and RF100-500. The single dragonfly I was trying to photograph flew away and was grabbed by a male and they set down right in front of me. Less than 1.2m away, since I had to back up to get the lens to focus :)



Getting both dragons in the plane of focus was a bit challenging, the slope was about 45 degrees and the reeds are in the water. In post I had the choice of 'ugly noise everywhere' and 'Topaz oversharpens, even with sharpening set to zero'. I picked the denoised version to get the background nice and smooth.

This one was shot with 1/200s, but 1/100s also gave excellent results at 500mm and MFD.
 

AlanF

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During a school run I noticed a few dragonflies flying over the pond next to the bike lane, so I returned with the RP and RF100-500. The single dragonfly I was trying to photograph flew away and was grabbed by a male and they set down right in front of me. Less than 1.2m away, since I had to back up to get the lens to focus :)



Getting both dragons in the plane of focus was a bit challenging, the slope was about 45 degrees and the reeds are in the water. In post I had the choice of 'ugly noise everywhere' and 'Topaz oversharpens, even with sharpening set to zero'. I picked the denoised version to get the background nice and smooth.

This one was shot with 1/200s, but 1/100s also gave excellent results at 500mm and MFD.
They are Common Hawker dragonflies. I have an almost identical shot posted a week ago. You got them very nicely in the same plane as they are both very sharp. Very nice shot.
 

koenkooi

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They are Common Hawker dragonflies. I have an almost identical shot posted a week ago. You got them very nicely in the same plane as they are both very sharp. Very nice shot.
It was the first time I have encountered these, which is strange since it turns out to be the most common variety of dragonflies here in the Netherlands. I do have trouble telling the females apart, waaaaay too many dragonflies have yellow/black females.
 

koenkooi

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They are Common Hawker dragonflies. I have an almost identical shot posted a week ago. You got them very nicely in the same plane as they are both very sharp. Very nice shot.
Someone on flickr pointed out that the male has the yellow 'T' at the start of the tail, which makes it a Migrant Hawker or 'horse biter' in Dutch since people think they bite horses when they are actually hunting horse-flies.
 
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AlanF

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Someone on flickr pointed out that the male has the yellow 'T' at the start of the tail, which makes it a Migrant Hawker or 'horse biter' in Dutch since people think they bite horses when they are actually hunting horse-flies.
Migrant Hawkers have paired blue and brown spots along the abdomen https://british-dragonflies.org.uk/species/migrant-hawker/ and I didn't see the brown spots. But, the short yellow marks on the back of the thorax do look like those from the Migrant Hawker so it most probably is one. I have learned something.
 
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Maximilian

The dark side - I've been there
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During a school run I noticed a few dragonflies flying over the pond ...
They are Common Hawker dragonflies. ...
My guess is that those are migrant hawker dragonflies, esp. when you look at the more blue eyes of the male.
Common Hawker males have more green in the eyes. But I am an not expert, so if I am wrong, please let me know.

Esp. compare to this picture (migrant hawker).

... and I didn't see the brown spots. ...
I agree that those brown spots seem to be missing.
Sometimes there are slight changes in color depending on the age of the imago. Maybe this is the reason, maybe because the male abdomen is fully in the shadow :unsure:
 
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AlanF

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My guess is that those are migrant hawker dragonflies, esp. when you look at the more blue eyes of the male.
Common Hawker males have more green in the eyes. But I am an not expert, so if I am wrong, please let me know.

Esp. compare to this picture (migrant hawker).


I agree that those brown spots seem to be missing.
Sometimes there are slight changes in color depending on the age of the imago. Maybe this is the reason, maybe because the male abdomen is fully in the shadow :unsure:
https://www.wildlifetrusts.org
Quote
The Migrant hawker is mostly dark brown and black in colour. The male has pale blue spots and yellow flecks all along the body, dark blue eyes, and pale yellow-and-blue patches on the thorax. The female has yellowish spots and brownish eyes. The black-and-blue hawkers are a tricky group of dragonflies to identify. The Migrant hawker is smaller and has more brown on it than the other three large species (Common, Azure and Southern Hawkers) and is not on the wing at the same time as the Hairy Dragonfly.


Mostly black in colour, the male Common Hawker has pale blue spots and yellow flecks all along the body, dark blue eyes, and pale yellow-and-blue patches on the thorax. The female has yellowish spots and brownish eyes. The black-and-blue hawkers are a tricky group of dragonflies to identify. The Common Hawker is larger and darker than the Migrant Hawker, lacks the lime green spots of the Southern Hawker, and has more black and less blue than the rare Azure Hawker of North Scotland.


I have spent ages on these in the past trying to decide - the statement The black-and-blue hawkers are a tricky group of dragonflies to identify. is certainly true! The difference in stripes on the back of the shoulders seems the clearest to me.
 
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AlanF

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Here is a flying Migrant Hawker that I identified correctly in Sept 2019, taken on the 90D + 100-400mm II + 1.4xTCIII. I couldn't process it properly then as DxO PL hadn't updated its RAW converter for the .CR3 files. Here, I converted with DxO but sharpened with Topaz AI as I find that combination deals very well with the noise for the 90D.

IMG_1446-DxO_migrant_hawker_dragonfly_flying-isss.jpg
 

CanonFanBoy

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Did you use your R5 or are you still awaiting delivery? Great photos!
I don't see how you guys catch them in flight. Amazing. Is there less shutter lag with the R5 vs the R? If I remember correctly my 5D Mark III seemed to be veryu quick when I pressed the shutter button. The R seems a little slow.
 

AlanF

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I don't see how you guys catch them in flight. Amazing. Is there less shutter lag with the R5 vs the R? If I remember correctly my 5D Mark III seemed to be veryu quick when I pressed the shutter button. The R seems a little slow.
It was on my first day’s testing with the R5 that I got a DIF and it clinched it for me that the R5 was a keeper. It locked on so quickly without any discernible lag. You just need patience and wait until they slow down.
 
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