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Ophrys sphegodes

Ophrys sphegodes
Photo Information
Copyright: Ivan Kruys (Argus) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
Genre: Plants
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-04-12
Camera: Canon 400D, Canon EF 300 f4L + Canon 1.4 converter
Exposure: f/5.6, 1/160 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2007-11-18 5:12
Viewed: 5050
Points: 64
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Today it is grey and dull: a bad day for nature photography. So one longs for light and warmth!
In the spring we spent a week in Cyprus and took lots of picture, mostly birds and butterflies but there was an orchid or two.

As orchids thrive on limey soils and Cyprus consists mainly of limestone, it is known for its wild orchid flora in the spring.

This is a species of orchid belonging to the complex sphegodes group: this may be a variety of the subspecies mammosa. Ori Fragman suggests that it is not a subspecies but a separate species, transhyrcana. It is quite large, the flower itself being nearly 3cm long.

You can see the two yellowish pollen bags, or pollinia, under the hood of the flower. Many Ophrys species attract bees and related insects as they are often mistaken for the female of the species and the male is stimulated to mate with the flower! When it attempts this, the sticky pollinia stick to the bees head and end up in another ophrys when it tries to mate with a flower again. This is one explanation as to why many orchid hybrids are found in the wild.

The ID of this species is still uncertain.

This shot was taken when the light was poor: a thunderstorm was looming nearby. But I managed it with the camera hand-held at a distance of a about 1.8 meters.
After cropping by about 30% and size reduction the image was selesctively sharpened.

eqshannon, dejo, vanderschelden, gracious, jrobertop, Silvio2006, rousettus, ramthakur, MMM, pablominto, haraprasan, sandpiper2, nirmalroberts, peter_stoeckl, Adanac, anel, Kathleen, tiklod, boreocypriensis has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To Michael_cy: ThanksArgus 2 12-01 13:45
To fragman: O. transhyrcanaArgus 1 11-28 12:19
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Critiques [Translate]

You have the focal point better than text books suggest:-) It gives so much clarity and color of the most important center..as if you were looking from your third eye, to third eye of a flower. You know what I mean? Very nice Ivan. It takes a special talent.

  • Great 
  • dejo Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 344 W: 51 N: 520] (2242)
  • [2007-11-18 6:34]

Hello Ivan,
Great photo, very good focus and nicely blured background
nice compo and sharpness
Regards, Dejan
p.s. thanks for advice

  • Great 
  • joey Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1739 W: 224 N: 6872] (24909)
  • [2007-11-18 7:22]

Hello Ivan,
a pretty orchid you show us today.
I love your composition that is not quite central but works superbly.
Nice colours that are natural and vibrent.
Excellent DOF aswell.
Well done,

Bonjour Ivan
Très belle macro, belles couleurs, netteté et cadrage, bravo
Amicalement Robi

Hello Ivan,
Well composed image; matching neutral background.

  • Great 
  • horia Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2158 W: 224 N: 4749] (16656)
  • [2007-11-18 9:25]

Hi Ivan

Just a quick one today.
Not a classic subject from you, but a very bewautiful one none the less.
I often remember my trips from spring or summer these days, too.
I really like the DOF in this shot and how it brings out the darker part of the flower, leaving a very ncie blurry BG behind.
Excellent POV and lovely vibrant colros, as well.

Bravo and TFS

Hello Ivan,
Good captured of this orchid in best DOF!
Superb clarity in colouration and details
thanks so much for the wonderful notes/information of this plant!
have a good week ahead, Ivan!

Hi Ivan.
Wonderful orchid!
Pleasant and soft composition.
Excellent exposition and POV.
Plans clean and well defined.
José Roberto

  • Great 
  • ridvan Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 498 W: 0 N: 1136] (5205)
  • [2007-11-18 10:33]

selam friend ;
Nice composition.Good POV and sharp image whit nice details.Colors are beautiful.Excellent shot of this plant well done.
TFS ridvan

Hi Ivan,
Today, I drove around 600 km western Turkiye to Nigde (central). I had same weather condition with you: gray and dull. So I cant capture no good photo.
As for your last post, you are very successful for plant photography as much as birds'. This is great with excellent focus and details on flowers. Superb colors on BG. Nicely composed and presented. You write always good and informative notes. Thanks alot for sharing.
best wishes

Orchids are my favourite, Ivan.
This is a fine specimen from Cyprus. I like the way you have composed this shot, giving a clear view of the major components of this delicate flower.
Thanks and regards.

  • Great 
  • MMM Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1114 W: 0 N: 2546] (11425)
  • [2007-11-18 18:46]

Hi Ivan
Nice presentation. This a sharp image whit great details.Light is excellent and I lke that OOF BG.
TFS Michel

hello ivan,
nice capture, i liked the dof and the kind of focus you have used here, lovely oof bg, well saturated colours, beautiful composition,
well done,
tfs & regards

Hello Ivan,
Those are amazing flower!
This is well done on the close-up work, attractive texture in the petals and warm beautiful colours...
Subject is well framed, pin sharp in vital details!
Pablo -

:-) OK-

  • Great 
  • Mana Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1772 W: 36 N: 5597] (18598)
  • [2007-11-19 1:17]

Hi Ivan,
Just marking this post wonderful post from you and will come back with a proper critique later.

  • Great 
  • Debz Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 505 W: 0 N: 847] (3307)
  • [2007-11-19 1:18]

Hi Ivan, a great and unusual shot of this fine Orchid. Great pov and I like the dof and soft background, it gives the Orchid a mood it deserves. Nice and sharp with great light, colours and detail. Good work.

Hi Ivan,
A very nice capture of this beautiful orchid flower. Excellent clarity and details even if low light and wind. Lovely composition too. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Hi Ivan

Prety good result with your 300 +1.4. I'm amazed at the DOF you got for f5.6, my set up would not have done as good I don't think.

Good sharpness and comoposition.


  • Great 
  • EOSF1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1393 W: 119 N: 5267] (23955)
  • [2007-11-19 5:16]

Hello Ivan, great sharpness on this beautiful flower. There is a lot of details, the exposure is fine and the background is perfect. Thanks !


Hi Ivan, splendid orchid with wonderful bright colors, great focus and excellent sharpness, very well done, ciao Silvio

bonjour ivan
tres bonne photo,l'avant plan est parfaitement net et joliement coloré pour laisser place progressivement au flou du BG.

Hi Ivan,
Thanks for sharing this well captured picture of beautiful orchid flower.
- Nirmal

  • Great 
  • badar Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 106 W: 0 N: 160] (785)
  • [2007-11-19 23:17]

Hi Ivan,
Beautiful orchid, nice clean background, nice composition.TFS

magnifique cette macro de ce coeur, bien vu, bonne prise naturelle et nettes, de bien jolies couleurs
merci a toi du partage


Hello Ivan,
perfect close approach to concentrate all the viewer's attention on the centre of the blossom, giving us a feeling of how a visiting insect might witness its target. I like the strict composition, the precise focussing, the very smooth transitions, the gentle colours, the very well supporting soft distant background. Perfectly describing, artistically pleasing image. Thank you!
With best regards,

  • Great 
  • Adanac Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
  • [2007-11-20 21:04]

Hello Argus,
Great depth of field on this lovely orchid image with sharp focus and nice exposure, thanks for sharing.

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2007-11-21 1:52]

hello Ivan,
You don't show very often flowers, but if you do it, it's well done. Excellent composition and beautiful natural colours. And I don't forget the very interesting note. Thanks a lot.
Have a nice day

Hi Ivan.
This is amazing, great close-up. Wonderful sharpness, colour and detail, perfect DOF.


Hello Ivan,
THE DOF and the wonderful colours are MAKING THIS EXCELLENT close-up. BG is excellent too!
Best regards my friend,


very nice, but not sphegodes, it looks like transhyrcana. TFS Ori

Hi friend Ivan,
Nice capture of this betiful orchid of my homeland. TFS friend.

Hi Ivan,
this is may be the endemic species Ophrys morio. Ophrys transhyrcana does not occur in Cyprus. Because of the late time that you took the picture (April is late for Cyprus) there is a possibility for Ophrys hystera.

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