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Norse Grayling

Norse Grayling
Photo Information
Copyright: Ivan Kruys (Argus) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2008-07-03
Categories: Insects
Camera: Canon 400D, Canon EF 300 f4L + Canon 1.4 converter
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/1600 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Satyrinae - Worldwide - 2 - [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2008-08-19 0:47
Viewed: 3944
Points: 56
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
The Norse Grayling (Oeneis norna)
This is a first for TN.
This butterfly is restricted to northern Norway, Sweden and Finland and is found nowhere else in the world.

Looking for this species is not one of the easiest pursuits! It either found on bogs where one is tortured by mosquitoes, or along rocky streams where blackflies bury their heads into your skin with resulting bleeding itchy sores. My son and I learned to tuck our trousers into our socks but the blackflies ignore mosquito repellent, even when generously applied to exposed parts.

They are found on the bogs of sub-alpine areas up to just above the tree line. In Swedish it is called Myrgräsfjäril, translated Bog Grayling.

Where they occur they can be quite common but when they land they hide themselves in the vegetation. They are also shy and readily fly off when one comes too close. All this makes photographing the Norse Grayling a difficult and unpleasant process.
As I wasn’t quite pleased with my results I joined two images together. Later I found that these images were at least as good as those in my butterfly books!

Their readiness to fly away made the long lens a useful tool.

The larvae take two years to develop and the larval host plant is thought to various species of Carex grasses. However this is difficult to prove as the larvae die in captivity.

Both these images were taken with the camera hand-held at a distance of about 2 meters (over 6ft). at f5.6 and a speed of 1200. at ISO 400. After moderate cropping they were selectively sharpened.

As we had a visit from my son, his wife and their two-year-old daughter, I was less active than usual on TN the last few days. My grand-daughter is a lively little girl!

gannu, red45, Janice, ramthakur, sandpiper2, crs, ralfsworld, eqshannon, jaycee, jignasi, boreocypriensis, nglen, maurydv, CatherineD, Jamesp, anel, cataclysta, rousettus, haraprasan, Hans_Cronert, jusninasirun has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • gannu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 988 W: 4 N: 3277] (14761)
  • [2008-08-19 1:04]

Hello Ivan, Neighbor today. You have spotted this and you have a good and lazor eye. Good shot and nice collage. Lovely composition and supported by nice note too. Thanks for sharing this beauty. Ganesh

  • Great 
  • batu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1079 W: 293 N: 4497] (16383)
  • [2008-08-19 1:20]

Hello Ivan,
I will immediately catch this butterfly for the Satyrinae Theme. o.k.?
An admirable picture and and admirable species!
Last year, I observed Oeneis glacialis in South Tyrol - it is always a nice
experience to face not so common or local species.
Best wishes, Peter

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2008-08-19 1:39]

Hello Ivan!

Sounds like good fun [maybe except mosquitos :-)]. I'm really glad that you captured and posted such rare trophy here. I know well value of these shots - picture of rare subject taken after long and lucky chase is much better than technically perfect picture of something common. Congratulations! BTW - this butterfly isn't maybe very corolfull but still looks great!

  • Great 
  • Janice Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3277 W: 148 N: 6163] (18832)
  • [2008-08-19 1:45]

Isn't it lovely when the grandchildren come visiting? You can spoil them and have fun with them. And then say goodbye and start cleaning up the house!!
This is an interesting pair of butterflies Ivan. Your patience and pain paid off - the photos are good to see. And being so rare makes them very special

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2008-08-19 1:46]

Pin-sharp pair of shots.
Excellent side-on view showing the wings very clearly.
Superb DOF.
Great composition.

Congrats on posting a new species too! :-)


So is mine, but I see her almost every day since she has joined the Kindergarten class in my school this year, Ivan :)!
I have to escort her back to her class at least twice a day!
The two images of the Norse Grayling you have stitched together look wonderfully sharp and colourful. The very first appearance of this species on TN adds to the richness of the site.
Both sides of the wings as seen in the top image are equally attractive.
Thanks for sharing these images of a butterfly which is confined to your region only.
Warm regards.

Hi Ivan

YOur bogs sound like a wonderful place to stay away from. But I admire you for your willingness to go and get this guy, just for us at TN :) lol.
I like the bottom shot the best. Good results.


  • Great 
  • crs Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 469 W: 0 N: 922] (3551)
  • [2008-08-19 5:53]

Hello Ivan,

Thank you for the interesting not. Despite your opinion the photos are very good. As you have captured a good light colors rendering is well made. Also the pattern of the wings is clearly shown.

Thank you for sharing,

  • Great 
  • Mana Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1772 W: 36 N: 5597] (18598)
  • [2008-08-19 6:54]

Hi Ivan,
Wonderful presentation of this beautiful butterfly with immaculate sharpness and clear details. Superb lighting and colours and I like both poses you have captured here. Very attractive looking species. Excellent POV, DOF and composition. Thanks for sharing.

Hej Ivan
Congratulation on this one!
Nice pose, details and colours.
TFS / Hälsningar

Hi Ivan, it is always a pleasure to see a butterfly I do not recognise!! This makes this image all the more interesting. Excellent composition, good colours and fine well focused details. regards h

Sure throws a monkey wrench in the gears of the Ark eh?:-) I wonder why or by what mechanism of nature excludes this from being common in other places...and it also makes me wonder that if it were introduced in other places, could it survive and by what means would it actually thrive or not...always questions..nature is more questions at times than answers..but to have a butterfly to be prefixed by Norse is somewhat of a good deal! Very nice duo montage Ivan.

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2008-08-19 9:51]

Hi Ivan,

Congratulations on your first on TN! We are lucky - we get to see two shots because of your ultra high standards. Obviously I have not seen this beauty before. Both are wonderful showing off both sides of the wings. You must be having a marvelous time with your family - I think we forget what two year olds were like until a grandchild visits!


Encantados de poder admirar esta mariposa exclusiva de esa zona realtivamente pequeña y que tantas dificultades os da para su fotografía. Creo que conseguiste un buen resultado al disparar desde tanta distancia.
Espero que disfrutes de tus nietos Ivan.
Un abrazo: Josep Ignasi Tejedor.

  • Great 
  • mariki Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 838 W: 60 N: 2307] (9477)
  • [2008-08-19 10:16]

Hello Ivan,

Good presentation of this geographically seldom butterfly. Good captures of the butterfly despite the difficulty to shot them. Good sharpness and good natural colours.

Hi my friend Ivan, an excellent macro shot of this rare beauty with great details. Alsa a great document on the species.
Many thanks for sharing this beauty my friend!
Greetings from TRNC,

  • Great 
  • nglen Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2883 W: 30 N: 9683] (36145)
  • [2008-08-19 11:44]

Hi Ivan. Thanks for taking all the trouble to get this beauty. Congrats for a first on Tn with this one. dont under sell your self under the conditions theyare good close ups. we can see the markings well from your well detailed picture with the natural colours. very well done TFS. Interesting notes too.

Is your son on TN.

Ciao Ivan,
complimenti per questa "prima" cattura di questa bellissima farfalla "scandinava", eccellente scelta compositiva, ottima definizione dei dettagli delle ali, nella seconda immagine si apprezzano bene i colori criptici delle ali posteriori quando nascondono quelle anteriori.
Complimenti di nuovo per questa cattura.
TFS. Maurizio

Hello Ivan,
Nice presentation of this rare species. And congratulations for your efforts. Your note is really interesting. The mosquitoes and blackflies seems to be very aggressive in Lappland. I wish you to enjoy the first years of your grand-daughter. Best regards,

  • Great 
  • Jamesp Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1369 W: 9 N: 6334] (18906)
  • [2008-08-19 22:51]

Hi Ivan

A lovely collage showing the butterfly to great advantage. Both shots are sharp and well composed.


  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2008-08-19 23:48]

Hello Ivan,
Amazing what passionate people are ready to do ! It is true that we never see the conditions in which a picture has been taken and to know it, makes it even more precious. Good idea to show two pictures of the Norse Grayling on two different plants. And finally the quality is quite good.Very interesting posting! (Nice to be grand-father :-)
Bonne journée

Hi Ivan
Great butterfly - not present in Poland. Two top quality images. Great sharpness, good OOF background. I think that I like the upper photo more but both shots are great.
Best wishes

  • Great 
  • EOSF1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1393 W: 119 N: 5267] (23955)
  • [2008-08-20 15:04]

Fantastic capture Ivan! Well done, those shots are fine in every way and a first here! Good job!


Hello Ivan,

Indeed Graylings are difficult to find and to photograph.
I have also Graylings photographed.
This specie I have never been seen before.
They are botg good picture trough the circumstances.


merhaba Ivan,
I see this species first time. you present it with two great macro. Superb colors, great focus and composition. thanks also for information. best wishes

Hi Ivan,
A nice capture of this rare species of grayling. Very nice collage with sharp details and a lovely composition. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Good sharp shots with the butterflies sitting in the typical lowgrowing bushes typical for the subalpine zone in northern Scandinavia. I like the upper one best. You give us very interesting information about this rare species. Thank you!

Ciao Ivan, great duoble macro of this interersting butterfly thai I never see before, thanks, great capture with good details, very well done, ciao Silvio

Hello Ivan. Congratulations on being the first to register this unique butterfly here. Well captured double shots in sharpness and detail. I like the contrasting different in the lower and upper wings. Fine copy with useful notes. TFS and warmest regards. Jusni

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