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Photo Information
Copyright: Sumon Sinha (Mana) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1772 W: 36 N: 5597] (18598)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-05-27
Categories: Insects
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/160 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2008-06-23 9:48
Viewed: 3738
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 92
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
I was out on tour and got stranded in the rains. A bridge collapsed and the rail services got snapped resulting in lot of distress for the people. The first monsoon rains was fearsome and already there are huge flooded areas. Anyway, I returned today after travelling for 22 hours, taking a detour, which normally should have taken only 8. I surely have missed a lot here and hope to catch up as early as possible.

I present today this beautiful Owlfly in the same location as my earlier dragonfly posting - among the reeds near a marsh. There were in fact two varieties but the other one eluded me. I will get back there and find it someday surely. The early morning sunlight gives it a nice golden glow. Shot taken hand-held. Hope everyone like it.

Owlflies are dragonfly-like insects with large bulging eyes and long knobbed antennae. They are not true flies, but rather neuropterans in the family Ascalaphidae, and as such are not closely related to the true flies at all.

Owlflies are readily distinguished from dragonflies because the latter have short bristle-like antennae. The closely related ant-lions, family Myrmeleontidae, have short, clubbed antennae, smaller eyes, and very different wing venation. The sole living member of the subfamily Albardiinae, the Brazilian Albardia furcata, also has short, clubbed antennae, but its typical reticulate ascalaphid wing venation demonstrates its actual relationships.

Adult owlflies are aerial predators feeding on other insects. When disturbed, some owlflies will release a strong, musk-like, chemical to deter an enemy. Adults of many New World species are most active at sunset and dawn and can often be collected around lights. During the day, such adults rest on stems and twigs with the body, legs, and antennae pressed to the stem. The abdomen in a few species is held up, projecting into the air, to look like a broken twig. Many Old World species, however, are most active during the day, and are brightly colored - many even hold their wings spread at rest like dragonflies. Most owlflies average about 2 inches in length. Adult Ululodes have large divided eyes, which is where the common name "Owlfly" came from, in addition to their crepuscular habits. Owlflies are worldwide in distribution, though in North America they are primarily southerly.

Eggs are laid on twigs or under stones. Larvae are predatory, and lie on the ground or in vegetation, covered with debris, waiting for prey. Larvae resemble those of ant-lions, but have a "finger-like appendage" on the side of each segment. Some genera actively cement sand and debris onto their bodies as camouflage. Pupation occurs in a spheroidal silk cocoon in leaf litter.

Scientific classification -
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Hexapoda
Class: Insecta
Subclass: Pterygota
Infraclass: Neoptera
Superorder: Endopterygota or Neuropterida
Order: Neuroptera
Suborder: Myrmeleontiformia
Superfamily: Myrmeleontoidea
Family: Ascalaphidae

Argus, eng55, fartash, Arjun, MMM, nglen, cicindela, CatherineD, gracious, SelenE, Jamesp, maurydv, darwin, jaycee, anel, horia, mayuresh, JPlumb, aes_thor, ramthakur, Heaven, uleko, boreocypriensis, jusninasirun, Adanac, GLEM, Ken52, Alex99, haraprasan, goldyrs, cataclysta, dejo, LordPotty has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2008-06-23 9:54]

Hello Sumon,
A great capture of an Owlfly and a fine contribution to TN as many of us have never seen these insects. You present this one from a great POV and with excellent sharpness so that the features are clearly seen against a pleasing OOF natural BG.
TFS this beauty,

  • Great 
  • eng55 Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1256 W: 42 N: 1976] (5892)
  • [2008-06-23 10:18]

Hi Sumon,
Excellent close up.Details are crisp clear and tack sharp.POV,colors,BG,DOF and composition are also wonderful.Very well done!
Thanks for posting.

Dear Sumon
Very nice shot of this beautiful Owlfly ,
Perfect details,exposure and composition.Superb shot my friend.


  • Great 
  • Arjun Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 358 W: 7 N: 1237] (7593)
  • [2008-06-23 10:36]

hello sir,
perfect macro picture..very nice details

  • Great 
  • MMM Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1114 W: 0 N: 2546] (11425)
  • [2008-06-23 11:16]

Hi Sumon
Beautiful image so sharp with great POV.Detail are amazing.Light and colors are very nice to.
TFS Michel

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2008-06-23 11:21]

Hi Sumon. Glad you are safe after your trip. This is a unusual fly. One i have not seen before. You have captured it with fine detail and natural colours. Great POV/DOF. with intersting notes too. TFS

  • Great 
  • mariki Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 838 W: 60 N: 2307] (9477)
  • [2008-06-23 11:41]

Hello Sumon,

A superb shot of this Owfly. Excellent composition. POV, DOF and sharpness are perfect. Splendid detail. Excellent light and colours.
Very well done,

Hello Sumon!
Beautiful profile picture of this Neuroptera species! I like light, DOF and sharpness :)
Best regards from Lodz,

Hello Sumon,
This is an excellent shot of this owlfly, with brilliant colours and amazing details. Perfect sharpness and background too. TFS,

My dear friend Sumon,
It's nice to know that you are fine from the trip, I am glad!
many thanks for this first class once again from you always!
perfection in every corner of the composition, my compliment
take care and my warmest regards

  • Great 
  • Jamesp Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1369 W: 9 N: 6334] (18906)
  • [2008-06-23 14:33]

Hi Sumon

I hope that you have recovered from your ordeal. Great shot of this strange looking insect - excellent detail and colour.


Stupenda cattura, eccellenti POV e composizione verticale con un bellissimo BG e la fantastica posa dell'insetto con le ali e le antenne in un perfetto bilanciamento contrapposto, straordinarie nitidezza e definizione dei dettagli, meravigliosi i colori. Grazie e complimenti. Ciao Maurizio

  • Great 
  • darwin Gold Star Critiquer [C: 259 W: 0 N: 403] (1401)
  • [2008-06-23 15:40]

Hi Sumon
Great closeup with wonderful detail and lovely color and light
tfs jon

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2008-06-23 16:23]

Hi Sumon,

Sorry you had to go through that ordeal while traveling. 22 hours!! An Owlfly - how fascinating. A beautiful macro. The antennae are bigger than he is! I love the legs on the stem. Excellent colors and details. I still can't get over those antennae!!


  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2008-06-23 16:34]

Hi Sumon,my great thanks for your work,you show us a incredible beauty,you are a great testimonial of the wildlife of your country and this is another fantastic example,my best compliments,it's a beautifull owlflies!!!Have a nice day,Luciano

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2008-06-23 23:03]

Hello Sumon,
This is such an interesting posting. I love Neuropteras with all the magnificent different species which exist through the world. Your picture is, like always, well-composed and has an excellent sharpness.
Thanks a lot and best regards

Hi Sumon,

Nice Macro picture, little relief [my view]in compo would have enhanced the beauty,it looks little tight.But excellent details. TFS.

  • Great 
  • horia Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2158 W: 224 N: 4749] (16656)
  • [2008-06-24 0:35]

Hi Sumon

Sorry to hear about all your troubles with the monsoon. I'm glad you are all right!

This is a splendid macro shot from you, showing this gorgeous owl fly so well and sharply! Your choice of DOF is exceptional and keeps the entire subject in such a nice, even focus...i especially like that both antennae are neat and sharp :)
Lovely colors and good composition, too!

Bravo and TFS

Hello Sumon da,
I never seen this owlfly before,very brilliant capture and splendid shot with excellent sharpness and lighting,wonderful details with great BG and your composition is always beautiful.

Hello Sumon, you continue to provide us with species that are new, at least to me. This is another. I have not seen an Owlfly, or even heard of one before. Those eyes (are probably how it gets its name) and those antennae are incredible. It reminds me of the story of Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf; "Granny what big eyes you have, granny, what big antennae you have". Okay, maybe that's stretching it a bit. This is an awesome, sharp and colourful shot of this fantastic looking fly.

Welcome back Sumon, and glad to see you came through safely. Thanks, John

Hi Sumon,
very iinteresting species and perfect photograph, not much more to say- perfect shot.

My goodness, you come across such a vast variety of wild creatures in your city, Sumon!
This Fly is a novelty for me and you have, as usual, given us a very fine image of it to enjoy and appreciate.
The focus on the subject from top to bottom is sharp and crisp and the colours are truly remarkable.
TFS and regards.

Hi Sumon, splendid strange creature, wonderful macro with fantastic light, great colors and excellent sharpness, very well done, ciao Silvio

Hi Sumon!

The day I will be able to take such a perfect picture, I will be happy! All is fine, the composition, the lighting and the clarity. I was also delighted by the interesting and instructive notes.

Kind regards


  • Great 
  • SelenE Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2249 W: 65 N: 4205] (13972)
  • [2008-06-24 8:29]

Hi Sumon,
It's the first time I see this, very interesting. A well focused, crisp sharp photo with very good lighting. TFS
Best wishes,

Hola Sumon, excelente macro, nítida, con buena luz y color. Se observan muy buenos detalles. Un saludo

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2008-06-24 9:51]

Hello Sumon,
Woderful photo of this strange insect, the Owlfly. Sharpness and clear colours are perfect. The light is gorgeous. Excellent POV and composition. Beautiful OOF BG.

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2008-06-24 12:52]

Hello Sumon,
What a brilliant capture of this fascinating insect with beautiful antennae! Excellent composition showing details very sharply and in fine natural colours against the warm colours in the background. Well done!
Many thanks, Ulla

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2008-06-24 13:40]

Hi Sumon,
great macro of this unusual insect.
I've always been fascinated by their incredible eyes and massive antenna... this looks like an alien :-)
Very sharp and very detailed.
Superb DOF and BG.
Wonderful light.

Well done,

Hi Sumon,
What a strange and interesting dragonfly ehich I have not seen before. Your capture is suprb in all around. TFS this beuty my friend!


Hello Sumon. Thanks for sharing this new inset here. I have never seen it before. Sharp detail and sharpness of the shot. The perspective is pleasing and very well done. Best regards. Jusni

  • Great 
  • arfer Gold Star Critiquer [C: 2731 W: 0 N: 0] (0)
  • [2008-06-24 20:41]

Hello Sumon

This is a new one for me.
Excellent sharpness and focus,the details are superb.
Wonderful vivid colours.
The antennae are beautiful.
Great job.

  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2008-06-24 23:57]

Hello Sumon,
Sorry for your troubles, hope things go well. This is simply an outstanding image of an incredible creature I have not seen before, thank you for sharing.

Impresionante: como lo haces ?? Es que todas te quedan bien jajaja.
Un abrazo: J. Ignasi.

  • Great 
  • GLEM Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor [C: 540 W: 87 N: 750] (10)
  • [2008-06-25 13:51]

hi Sumon,
fantastic macro shot, great Pov, DOF and colors.


  • Great 
  • Ken52 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 636 W: 93 N: 1243] (4195)
  • [2008-06-25 15:03]

Sounds like you need wings like this perfect speciman you photographed. Wonderful colors, exceptional focus and detail. Eyes and antennas are amazing. This is an excellent composition and a very interesting post. Excellent note, but sorry you got stranded.

  • Great 
  • Nilson Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 488 W: 0 N: 566] (4423)
  • [2008-06-26 13:45]

Ola Sumon
Bela foto com incriveis e belos detalhes, você conseguiu dar a foto um incrivel realismo, as cores são bem agradaveis, a nitidez esta muito boa.

Great color and profile. Another wonderful addition to your insect collection.

Sharpness and overall technical quality are top notch

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2008-06-26 22:19]

Hi Sumon.
What a refined reflection of the beauty at so wonderful surroundings. Simply great composition and cropping. I am also impressed with terrific sharpness of the insect and stem images, wonderfully blurred pictorial BG, clear colours and fine lights. My compliments and many thanks.

Hi Sumon Da,
A superb capture of this owlfly. Excellent composition and razor sharp details. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Hello Sumon,
It's a great shot my friend.
The fact is I just don't have the darn time lately to do this as I would like to. So I will not post for awhile..
Time for a vacation :)

bonjour sumon
oh!l'image est parfaite,c'est net d'un bout a l'autre de l'insecte.

Perfection seems to be you!
What a shot!

  • Great 
  • iris Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 479 W: 60 N: 970] (3088)
  • [2008-07-04 23:39]

Sharpness is synonymous with your work,Sumon..
I have n'ver come across this fly and i am sure with a shot as sharp and clear as this i could distinguish it anywhere....

Every single detail on this Owl fly stands out in brilliant and outstanding form in this capture of yours.I admire the skill with which you manage your work.No heavy equipment...but simple P&S that works wonders when you turn your skill into the best gagdget you ever had.
Excellent PoV and DoF, superb sharpness, clarity and spot on focus.The OOF Bg provides a good idea of its habitat.Very well done.
TFS & Cheers

Hi Sumon
Perfect shot of these beautiful insect. Unusual POV Fantastic sharpness and great DOF As always nothing to critique
Best wishes

  • Great 
  • dejo Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 344 W: 51 N: 520] (2242)
  • [2008-09-13 9:42]

Hello Sumon,
Perfect capture!
pose, sharpness, colors, background...fantastic!
great work!

Another unusual species that I don't remeber seeing on TN before.
Once again,your capture is perfect.
Excellent composition,with wonderful sharpness and colour.
Fantastic image Sumon.

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