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Thread: Damselfly Threesome

  1. #1

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    Damselfly Threesome

    OK it's past the '9 pm watershed' now so I can show some explicit insect photos.

    I was trying to find a good camera angle on this pair of mating Azure Damselflies when a confused second male rushed in and tried to mate with the first male.

    Damselfly Threesome

    Alternatively, he may be attempting to push the first male aside, which does happen sometimes. And he hasn't realised the basic principle of mechanics - grasping what you are trying to push apart doesn't work.

    Unfortunately, I just missed out on shooting a perfect photo here. I was trying to find an angle around a stinging nettle but keeping square with the subject so when this happened the composure wasn't perfect and the males heads were too close to the left edge.

    Ideally, I would like to have rotated the scene slightly so that the female's wings occupied more of that blank area in the top right.

    I did get another shot after moving my position but it wasn't square with the subject and didn't have sufficient depth of field to keep everything in focus.

    However, I think this is still an interesting example of insect life.

  2. #2

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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    However, I think this is still an interesting example of insect life. ----------------I agree, well done geoff.


    There is a fine line between getting close to show detail, and getting too close . I find i often try to get too close and end up loosing a shot due to clipping, or not enough depth of field. I find most of the time, my best shots are the one's that include the entire subject and a little extra room to crop a better composition. I do this with whitetails (get too close ) all the time. Now i started to shoot without the TC so i will be forced to shoot wider.

    I can picture how this image would have looked with a step back. ( still a good image as is, but would have been better) If nothing else, a lesson to all.

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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    Thanks for the reply, Steve. What I often do is to take the first shot at a distance then gradually move closer while taking more shots. It's also an insurance against fly aways when you get too close.

    But in this case, I had plenty of room on the right side. This image has been cropped on the right. The problem was a stinging nettle on the left which prevented me from moving in that direction.

    Ideally, after taking a couple of shots I would have tried to move the nettle sideways without scaring the damselflies. But in reality they flew away shortly after this shot.

  4. #4
    ktuli's Avatar
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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    Makes my two-some boring by comparison... Though, by a strange change from my norm or usually getting too close too, I managed to hit this one right at the right distance to not cut anything off (this is uncropped)...

    Damselfly Threesome

    - Bill

  5. #5
    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    Hi Geoff,

    Here's one of my recent attempts;

    Damselfly Threesome
    Nikon D5000 + Nikon 105mm f2.8 VR2: 1/500s, f/11, iso800 (195-40094)
    F11 and click image to see at 1,137px 1,000px

    It suffers a bit from the "not side on enough to have everything sharp" effect you/Steve mentions. Here they are about to complete the link up Bill has shown us. I may add another later in week, if you've no objection, it's getting a bit late to PP another tonight.

    Cheers,

  6. #6

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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    I like all these shots but Bills has that little something extra in the fact his flies formed a heart shape while performing the act!!

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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    True love prevails...
    At first glance, I thought is was manipulated in PS.
    Right time - right place - Beautiful!
    Quote Originally Posted by ktuli View Post
    Makes my two-some boring by comparison... Though, by a strange change from my norm or usually getting too close too, I managed to hit this one right at the right distance to not cut anything off (this is uncropped)...

    Damselfly Threesome

    - Bill

  8. #8
    ktuli's Avatar
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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    Actually, I've seen damselflies mating like this before... it is much more common that you guys might think.

    Oh wait... no, that's wrong... that's the rarest thing ever! That shot took way more skill than luck! I had to sort through thousands of mating pairs to find a set that would make a heart shape for me!

    Or something like that...

    When I took it, I thought to myself that I would post it as its own thread with the title of "Love is in the air... or on the end of a leaf" or something clever like that, but then I got home and saw Geoff's thread and figured it just wouldn't compete with a threesome!

    - Bill

  9. #9
    Seriche's Avatar
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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff F View Post
    OK it's past the '9 pm watershed' now so I can show some explicit insect photos.

    I was trying to find a good camera angle on this pair of mating Azure Damselflies when a confused second male rushed in and tried to mate with the first male.

    Damselfly Threesome

    Alternatively, he may be attempting to push the first male aside, which does happen sometimes.
    It was so fascinating that I had to go looking:

    http://news.nationalgeographic.com/n...gay_flies.html

    And he hasn't realised the basic principle of mechanics - grasping what you are trying to push apart doesn't work.


    Agreed. I'm thinking that a miniaturised version of Newton's Principia gently placed near their trysting place might help to put things right

    Unfortunately, I just missed out on shooting a perfect photo here. I was trying to find an angle around a stinging nettle but keeping square with the subject so when this happened the composure wasn't perfect and the males heads were too close to the left edge.

    Ideally, I would like to have rotated the scene slightly so that the female's wings occupied more of that blank area in the top right.

    I did get another shot after moving my position but it wasn't square with the subject and didn't have sufficient depth of field to keep everything in focus.
    I haven't tried it myself yet (and have mixed feelings so far, I admit) but with a relatively still subject like this have you considered stacking?

    However, I think this is still an interesting example of insect life.
    So do I. It's a wonderful capture!

    (And so are the others posted here).

    Seri

  10. #10
    CBImages's Avatar
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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    Now BT have rewired my telephone at the exchange I can upload images once again.

    Damselflies mate many times, the males take a parcel of semen from their tail and place it in their secondary, sexual organ which is under their thorax. They grasp a female at the back of her neck, she arches her tail underneath to reach the packet of semen and uses it to fertilise her eggs. The male will usually remain attached to the female until she has laid her eggs to ensure that she doesn't mate with another male. If he lets her go another male may attach himself, remove the first males semen packet and replace it with his own.
    When competition is great for females then other males, like this one in your wonderful image will try and dislodge the male in possession of the female.
    What an amazing way to go about reproduction.

    Here is one of my 'mating damselfly' images to add to the growing collection.

    Regards

    Chris
    Damselfly Threesome

  11. #11
    ktuli's Avatar
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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    Quote Originally Posted by Seriche View Post
    I haven't tried it myself yet (and have mixed feelings so far, I admit) but with a relatively still subject like this have you considered stacking?
    Seri,

    These aren't necessarily stationary subjects. The male is more than capable of flying around with the female attached.

    - Bill

  12. #12
    Seriche's Avatar
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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    Quote Originally Posted by ktuli View Post
    Seri,

    These aren't necessarily stationary subjects. The male is more than capable of flying around with the female attached.

    - Bill
    My goodness, Bill! The insect equivalent of The Mile High Club

  13. #13

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    Re: Damselfly Threesome

    Later, I did manage a couple of shots of the standard position. Previously, I have seen Bill's heart shaped coupling in action but never manage to get a sucfficiently good enough angle to produce a shot like his.

    Going back to some images from a couple of year's ago I found one where they were adopting the classic egg laying position. Although they flew, in tandem, out of site for the actual depositing of eggs.

    Damselfly Threesome

    But I did manage a shot of an Emperor Dragonfly laying eggs into water.

    Damselfly Threesome

    The water distortion effect has optically 'bent' the tail.
    Last edited by Geoff F; 20th July 2011 at 05:53 PM. Reason: photo added

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