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Delicate operation

Delicate operation
Photo Information
Copyright: Eduard Baak (snowfalken) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 419 W: 27 N: 497] (1788)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2006-07-14
Categories: Insects
Camera: Canon EOS 30 D, Canon EF 70-200mm f4 L USM
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Butterflies [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2006-07-14 16:32
Viewed: 3467
Points: 16
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Vanessa cardui (painted lady butterfly)

Geographic Range

The Painted Lady is found everywhere in the world except South America, the Arctic, and Australia.


The Painted Lady is found almost anywhere, but they tend to inhabit brightly lighted and open environments. They prefer clover fields, flowery meadows and hilly country. Marshes, dunes, and thorn scrubs also attract the Painted Lady.

Physical Description

The Painted Lady has a pointed forewing which bears a distinct white bar. The hindwing has a submarginal row of 5 tiny black dots. The upperside of the freshly emerged butterfly is orange with rose-like overtones. The underside is a mottled gray, brown, and black.


Females lay eggs on the plants their babies will eat. The caterpillars that hatch out feed continuously and molt several times. After a few weeks they transform into a pupa, go through a complete metamorphosis, and emerge as an adult butterfly. The timing of this depends on the climate, the warmer it is the faster they grow.

Breeding season

All year in the tropics, spring and summer in cooler climates.


A green, barrel-shaped egg is laid singly on a host plant. The color of the larva varies from chartreuse with black marbling to a purple with a yellow hue.


Lifespan depends on the climate, but is probably never more than one winter. Only adults survive through winter, and even then only in mild climates.


The Painted Lady is well known for its migratory behavior. It is continuously brooded and does not disperse. Adult males will perch in the late afternoon to establish and defend a territory. However, a male does not selectively perch on species of plants that serve as larval hosts. Almost always males win exclusive use of their defended areas.

Food Habits

The Painted lady consumes more than 100 different plants, some include thistles, Burdock, and Groundsel. The Larval foodplants are thistles and members of the families Asteraceae and Malvaceae.


jchemas, liquidsunshine, jcoowanitwong, scottevers7, SkyF has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Hi Eduard
Excellent composition of this butterfly with great colors and details.
Superb POV, DOF, and BG.

Nice capture Eduard,
The details are nice, clear and sharp.
Good colours, lighting and exposure. DOF is spot on and the POV is good.
Well composed and nicely framed.
Thanks for posting, have a great weekend.

  • Great 
  • pvs Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1127 W: 254 N: 3161] (14464)
  • [2006-07-15 4:13]

Hi Eduard,

Nice composed shot with this different POV,well seen and captured,


Hi Eduard,
This is not an easy angle to take a shot. You handle well. Sharp and clear picture. Excellent handle of light. TFS

Hi Eddie,
I really like this unique POV you took this from.
This need alot of DOF to work, and you pulled it off. Nice color saturation and the detail is very sharp.
Nice shot!

i loved Yours photos;-)

  • Great 
  • batu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1079 W: 293 N: 4497] (16383)
  • [2006-07-15 11:23]

Hallo Eduard,
there are many TrekNature pictures of Vanessa cardui. But this one is particular with respect to point of view and details seen. Besides the butterfly, the flowers and their structures are also well presented.
Beautiful macro!

  • Great 
  • SkyF Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2234 W: 188 N: 1912] (8073)
  • [2006-07-19 16:31]

Hello Eduard,
very streamlike composition ;-). Great POV and excellent sharpness. Dof and colors are great also.

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