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Last Nectar

Last Nectar
Photo Information
Copyright: Alexei Alyokhin (Alex99) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2006-10-13
Categories: Insects
Camera: Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D, Konica Minolta AF 100 F2.8 Macro (D), Hoya HMC Super UV(0) 55 mm
Exposure: f/22, 1/125 seconds
Details: (Fill) Flash: Yes
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Syrphidae (Hover flies) of Europe-1 [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2006-10-26 11:35
Viewed: 4505
Favorites: 2 [view]
Points: 76
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Autumn. Last flowers are fading. Hoverflies stock up the food for the winter. Days become cool. Owing to it hoverflies became sluggish and allow to photograph them unhurriedly.

Taking this picture, I was testing my new macro ring flash (but old type). My experiments with it show, that by means of macro ring flashes it is possible to solve almost all problems with illumination at macroshooting. At use of this macro flash on close distance (up to 50 cm) at any lighting it is possible to apply necessary f-number (for example, 22 and more) and ISO (100-200).

Other detailed pictures of this insect have allowed me to define its species precisely enough. This is the Eristalis arbustorum.


Flies in the Diptera family Syrphidae are commonly known as hoverflies, flower flies, or Syrphid flies.

As their common names suggest, they are often seen hovering or nectaring at flowers; the adults feed mainly on nectar and pollen, while the larvae (maggots) eat a wide range of foods. In some species, the larvae are saprotrophs, eating decaying plant and animal matter in the soil or in ponds and streams. In other species, the larvae are insectivores and prey on aphids, thrips, and other plant-sucking insects. Aphids alone cause tens of millions of dollars of damage to crops worldwide every year, and so aphid-feeding hover-flies are being recognised as important natural enemies of pests, and potential agents for use in biological control. Adult syrphid flies are important pollinators.

Many Syrphids mimic bees or wasps in appearance. It is thought that this mimicry protects hover flies from falling prey to birds and other insectivores which avoid eating true wasps because of their sting. However a flower fly and a wasp can be distinguished by counting the wings. The flies have two wings, and the wasps and bees have four. Or simply looking at the head, if it looks like a flies head then its likely to be harmless- if not then its best not to risk it. Hover flies get their name from their characteristic flight pattern of hovering nearly still, then darting a short distance very rapidly only to start hovering again, a pattern not seen in the wasps and bees they mimic.

About 6,000 species in 200 genera have been described.

See more info:


These sites have helped to me to identify species of captured hoverfly:

Eristalis arbustorum

Add equipment:

Teleconverter: Kenko AF 2x Teleplus MC7 DG
Flash: Minolta Macro Ring Flash 1200 AF-N

cataclysta, batu, Arp, SkyF, RAP, zumoduvas, Hil, Maite, jeanpaul, blakitan, jcoowanitwong, dew77, saguzar, valy67, takos1, vanderschelden, AndyB, pilonm, izler, cedryk, Shoot_Score, oscarromulus, Chaga, cicindela, meyerd, marhowie, Miss_Piggy, jusninasirun has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Nice job on this macro. Very good eye to detail.


Fantastic Macro. Very good sharpnes and DOF. Interesting composition.
Best wishes

  • Great 
  • batu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1079 W: 293 N: 4497] (16383)
  • [2006-10-26 11:58]

Hello Alexei,
stunning close-up of the hoverfly. Excellent point of view to show feeding of the fly. Insect and plant details are nicely seen in natural colours.
Best wishes

  • Great 
  • Arp (57)
  • [2006-10-26 13:00]

I really like it. Tank you for the photo and very explanatory notes on the insect and the techniques.

excellent alexei
j'adore les grain de pollen sur le corps de la mouche,sa netteté est parfaite.
les couleurs naturelles et bon contraste aussi.

  • Great 
  • uleko Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3396 W: 172 N: 3310] (10940)
  • [2006-10-26 13:16]

Hello Alexei,
Fantastic macro shot of this Hoverfly covered in pollen! Very sharp showing interesting details and the colour is natural. Really well done!
Thanks, Ulla

  • Great 
  • SkyF Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2234 W: 188 N: 1912] (8073)
  • [2006-10-26 14:35]

Hello Alexei.
looks like this one was having a bath in pollen. Great composition, POV and the crop are fabulous. Colors, sharpness and details are amazing.

Hi Alexei,
it's a perfect shot - I love to see this nice hoverfly over and over with pollen on this pretty and colourful flower. Excellent sharpness and so pretty, I like it, thanks
Sabine - wishnugaruda

  • Great 
  • RAP Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2524 W: 345 N: 2373] (7405)
  • [2006-10-26 14:59]

Wow Alexei, impressive macro with wonderful details and colors.
I like the POV with very good sharpness and focus, showing the tiny hairs and grains of pollen.
Accurate use of the flash (without over exposure) and framing.
Nice job.
Thanks and regards... Ricardo

Hello Alexei.

Very nice macro photo, very good details an colors.


  • Great 
  • Hil Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 696 W: 13 N: 1407] (5035)
  • [2006-10-26 15:57]

Hi Alexei,

Great macro shot, lovely composition and I love the angle of your POV showing us the buggy eyes and a great pose with the Hoverfly feeding on the Flower, excellent sharp detail with all the pollen all over the Hoverfly and beautiful colours too.

TFS Hilary :o)

  • Great 
  • Maite Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 998 W: 65 N: 1270] (5199)
  • [2006-10-26 16:06]

Hello Alexei
What a stunning macro! Very beautiful composition and perfect colors. I like it very much.
Best wishes.

Hello Alexi,

excellent colors, Bg, POV, DOF perfect details, very crisp, nicly composed and capture photo,

TFS kyle

Hi Alexei,
Superb macro shot. Amazingly sharp, can see the yellow pollens. Great DoF. Very nicely done.

Ben Lakitan

Hello Alexi,
Wonderful to see this hoverfly powdered with pollens. Excellent macro picture. Sharp and clear picture with all details clearly showed. TFS.

Hi Alexi,
This is a great and superb picture, wow! I like this POV, DOF, details, composition, colors, in fact, everything here :) Not much to say beside that is a great macro! Congratulations!

  • Great 
  • dew77 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4432 W: 248 N: 4028] (13270)
  • [2006-10-27 10:35]

Privet Alexei,
Wonderful close up.POV,details,sharpness,details,colors and composition are excellent.

  • Great 
  • carper Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1973 W: 119 N: 2582] (8439)
  • [2006-10-27 13:40]

I love it Alexei,
a fantastic macro, wht a fantastic details, realy a super shot, well seen and a good point of view and a good quality, very nice job.
gr. jaap

Bonjour Alexei
C'est une belle macro avec ce bourdon. Les détails et les belles couleurs sont superbes ainsi que la composition .
Merci et au revoir et bon week end...JP
les sourires demain

Hello Alexei,
SUPERB MACRO!! I love the details and the composition. Perfect illumination and colours.
Definitively a great job. Congratulations

  • Great 
  • osse Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 955 W: 0 N: 89] (7805)
  • [2006-10-27 19:43]

Hi Alexei
Great macro shot. Great colours, light, sharpnes, details and DOF.
Excellent alex


Hello Alexei !
This is really an awesome close-up ! Excellent details, even the little spots of pollen are sharp ! Very beautiful composition and exposure too, and you made excellent use of you flash. The nots is also very interesting. very well done !

cela lui goute tellement qu' elle en a partout. Thomas

Deliziosa foto, Alex!
bella quest'ape, coperta di polline che succhia il fiore;

Ottimi i dettagli ed i colori!

Ciao e grazie.

  • Great 
  • sily Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 239 W: 6 N: 395] (1934)
  • [2006-11-03 12:42]

Hi Alex!
Great macro work in strong colours!
Well composed and with good details of the insect, the details of the polen are very beautiful. A very well composed shot with lovely colors.

Hi Alexei,
Interesting macro shot with a lot of sharpness; good note explaining the DOF.

  • Great 
  • AndyB Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1366 W: 32 N: 1351] (3982)
  • [2006-11-06 14:44]

Hello Alexei,
Its nice to view your work again!
This is an excellent macro.
Great lighting,vivid colours and detail and a great POV too.
Excellent work,well done.


Hello Alexei,

It is a real bath of pollen! You did a great composition of this fly close-up! In order to achieve this you got a great pov and managed excellently the exposition! The colors looks so natural and we see a lot of great details! Very well done and TFS,


  • Great 
  • jossim Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1538 W: 5 N: 2240] (12636)
  • [2006-11-13 7:59]

Bonjour Alexei!

Bravo pour les détails et les belles couleurs.


  • Great 
  • izler Gold Star Critiquer [C: 1387 W: 3 N: 9] (44)
  • [2006-12-09 9:18]

hello Alexei
here is your another excellent micro working. all the pollens are visible. composition, point of view, colours, using of light and flash, focus, sharpness and details are great

  • Great 
  • cedryk Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 967 W: 50 N: 1722] (5270)
  • [2007-02-01 19:26]

Hello Alexei,
There so many incredibly good shots in your PF, How come I didn't see them before!?
Anyway, this closeup is superbly composed. Fantastic set of colours as well. Perfect note. Best greetings and tnanks for sharing!!!

I have found the hoverfly...
Where is the crabspider??? ;)

What a fine shot. What can I say that hasn't already been said? Admirable work! Thanx for macroing! J.

What a great photo of this Hoverfly so full of nectar all
over its TINY body.
Fine and sharp details.
Greetings from Mario.

What a great, very detailed close-up! This fly looks wonderful my Friend!
Dear Alexei, you presented a great quality picture which can be characterized by not only great colours, sharpness and details, but also very nice POV!
Bravo for the very educational note too!
Best withes from Lodz!

Fantastic POV in this one Alexei, a very well composed macro closeup. Everything is just about perfect IMHO :)
Lovely image..
Very well done.

Dear Alex
You have such a wonderful gallery jam packed with photos which makes it very difficult to make a choice of a photo to critique. Yes I know that everybody posting a new photo would prefer to have the newest to be awarded a smiley, but I could not resist this "Last Nectar" photo of yours. This is a lovely, clear photograph with much fine detail to appreciate. The fine hairs on the hoverfly’s paws and other body parts are so clear and the focus of this macro is spot-on. The golden yellow and lilac of the flower is a good blend and the pollen dust adds a special touch to round of this sunny presentation. Like always it was a pleasure looking and admiring one of your photos. Thanks for sharing.
Kind regards

  • Great 
  • clnaef Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 778 W: 67 N: 645] (6814)
  • [2008-03-11 23:54]

Magnifiques détails bien contrasté.
Bonne journée.

Hello Alexei. I like the pollen on the back of this sharp focus inset. Nicely closed and the compound eyes are just brilliant. Fine composition and thanks for sharing in TN. Regards. Jusni

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