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Hoverfly resting (macro)

Hoverfly resting (macro)
Photo Information
Copyright: Mike Muizebelt (Mousehill) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 122 W: 64 N: 183] (754)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2005-08-20
Categories: Insects
Camera: Pentax *ist DS
Exposure: f/10.0, 1/200 seconds
Details: (Fill) Flash: Yes
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): 40-49 Points (Chapter 6) [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2005-10-01 18:37
Viewed: 5869
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 51
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Common name:
Flower fly, Syrphid fly, Syrphidae

Scientific name:
Eristalis spp., Volucella spp.

Aphids, thrips, psyllids, scale insects, small caterpillars, and larvae of Heliotes

Eggs are tiny, about 1mm in size, ovate-shaped, and glistening-white. These are found laid singly and close to the developing aphid colony in the leaves, shoots, or stems of the plants. They hatch within 2-3 days.

The larvae, known as Syrphids, are legless slug like maggots, about 1-13 mm in length depending on their larval stages. They usually have a mottled-gray, beige, or light-green color. They lift their pointed heads to look for preys. Once preys are located, their mouthparts suck out the contents of the preys. Larvae are frequently found feeding on aphids in the sheltered and curled portion of leaves. They blend well with their habitat and therefore they must be looked for closely to locate them.

Pupae are teardrops shaped and are found in the soil surface or in the plant's foliage.
Adult hoverflies are true flies with only two wings instead of four which most insects have. Adults are large and beautiful insects about 13 mm long. They have a dark head, a dark thorax, and a banded yellow and black abdomen. They closely resemble bees or wasps rather than flies. Their habit of hovering like humming birds gave them the names hoverflies or flower flies. They are expert hoverers, able to remain absolutely stationary in midair. In some species, males will hover in certain spots to attract the attention of females while other species patrol a wider area of up to 100 yards to feed and mate. They dart from flower to flower making them easy to distinguish from the bees and wasps. They feed on pollen, nectar, and honeydew. They are good pollinators. ConservationHoverflies are attracted to all flowering plants but even more so to small-flowered herbs like wild mustard, coriander, dill, lupins, sunflower, and fennel. It is advisable to have multiple crops as adults basically feed on pollen and nectar and it is advisable to allow flowering weeds such as wild carrot and yarrow to grow between crop plants.

Hoverflies' larvae are most noticeable in the latter half of the growing season when aphids are established.

More about the photo:
(At least this is information I didn't have to look up on the internet ;-))
I wanted for this photo an impression of the hoverfly in it's environment so I coose for a scene with the flower as the dominant subject and the hoverlfy posed on top of it. Lens used the 100mm macro, without tubes. To get the lighting on the hoverfly right I had to overexpose the inside of the flower unfortunately. A lot of flash with F10 was used to diminish the environmental light and get the black background. In post processing I added some contrast and saturation and sharpened for the web.

Hope you enjoy!

odin, chiliu, sway, TAZ, Janice, sAner, carper, wallhalla15, dew77, Toni, red45, scottevers7, ddg, Comandante, Luc, jmouche has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To fragman: OverexposureMousehill 1 10-02 06:17
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • odin Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 177 W: 1 N: 209] (1169)
  • [2005-10-01 18:51]

Hi Mike, this is a realy beautifull macro! I have nothing to say. It just perfect. Well done, Sébastien

  • Great 
  • chiliu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1457 W: 0 N: 1176] (6526)
  • [2005-10-01 20:34]

Excellent close-up, Mike
Very nice composition, good light and dark backround, beautiful colour.
Well done and thanks for sharing!

One of the best macros i've seen.


Nice, though the flower is 'burnt'. The flower is Agrostemma githago.

  • Great 
  • livios Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2150 W: 319 N: 4263] (16942)
  • [2005-10-02 0:44]

Mike, the dark background highlights the flower and the insect. Upon the flower, some overexposure, but that doesn't bother me.

I like composition and pov a lot. Sharpness and dof are great too.

Another great job by you.

Very nice close-up, Mike.
Well seen from the dakr BG. The sharpness and colors are very good. I like the composition and POV. But some parts are OE.
Well done.

  • Great 
  • sway Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 305 W: 85 N: 319] (1276)
  • [2005-10-02 2:43]

HI Mike,
Another putstanding shot.
Great macro work here.
Nice details and very clear,
Great composition.

  • Great 
  • TAZ Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2241 W: 47 N: 3167] (10926)
  • [2005-10-02 3:15]

Wow ! Quite an artistic shot ! This macro is great, the DOF is perfect, the hoverfly is very clear, contrast flower / background works well, droplets are bonus, etc. Interesting note about insect + photo setting... Congratulations Mike !

  • Great 
  • Janice Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3277 W: 148 N: 6163] (18832)
  • [2005-10-02 6:02]

Hi Mike, you did a great job on this photo. Your macro has given you perfect results, teh composition, colours and sharpness are superb! Well done.

  • Great 
  • sAner Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1455 W: 74 N: 1426] (4750)
  • [2005-10-02 11:13]

Wauw! Wat een prachtige, heldere foto! De compositie is perfect and tbe colors are marvelous. Details are superb and the expsoure is spot on. Great! TFS!


Ps-I really like your nickname; how it is a conversion of your real name and all. :)

Hello Mike!
Amazing pose! Great scene withe fantastic POV. And a composition with this flower- perfect!

  • Great 
  • carper Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1973 W: 119 N: 2582] (8439)
  • [2005-10-02 12:53]

Yes Mike this one is good too.
very good photo with this hooverfly.
hooverflies inpire me every time again. the beauty is great, the pov is great, the colours are great,the dof is good, the composition is realy a nice one, well Mike this is a very good job you did here.
gr. Jaap

Brilliant macro Mike. Great composition with splendid details. Great colours and an excellent POV. Great Job !!

  • Great 
  • dew77 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4432 W: 248 N: 4028] (13270)
  • [2005-10-03 4:02]

Hello Mike!
Wonderful macro.Vivid colors,DOF,details,framing,POV and composition are excellent.TFS...:-)

  • Great 
  • Graal Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Silver Note Writer [C: 751 W: 31 N: 20] (5100)
  • [2005-10-03 5:46]

Hi Mike,
good composition, sharpness and colours. I like it. Interesting note, too. Good job.
Rgs, Aleksander

  • Great 
  • red45 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2636 W: 74 N: 9091] (31094)
  • [2005-10-03 17:48]

Another great picture of hoverfly Mike. I like composition with big flower and tiny fly. Both are colorfull and detailed. Flower is slightly OE, but overall looks good.

Hi Mike,
This is a superb shot! The detail and colors are amazing. The composition and framing are perfect. This one fits in my WOW! catagory. Nice Work!

  • Great 
  • ddg Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 867 W: 24 N: 1008] (5507)
  • [2005-10-04 3:44]

Bonjour Mike, magnifique macro pleine de fraicheur et de délicatesse, superbe piqué egalement, mes félicitations Didier.

  • Great 
  • Toni Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 403 W: 2 N: 316] (2034)
  • [2005-10-04 7:01]

What a superb macro. That hoverfly is so sharp. Well position on the side. Lovely purple colour.

Hello Mike!
Wonderful close up.Colors,DOF,sharpness,POV and composition are perfect.Thanks for sharing.

  • Great 
  • Luc Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1835 W: 301 N: 4287] (14767)
  • [2005-10-08 19:50]

Personal assessment of the photo: very good.
Good visual impact.
Aptness of the photo for the site: excellent.
Personal assessment of the note: complete.
Thank you Mike.

  • Great 
  • klemmg Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 302 W: 40 N: 484] (1719)
  • [2005-10-10 17:52]

Good composition showing both flower and fly. The light parts of the flower are a bit OE. Huge DOF that brings out the whole fly sharp. Flower + fly nicely isolated from the blurred BG. WEll done!

Hi Mike. Very nice capture.POV,framing and composition are wonderful.Thanks for sharing.José

Fabulous DOF although the center of the flower is a touch washed out as you mentioned. Great detail on the fly, well done!


Prachtig, deze. De elegantie van deze vliegjes komt goed tot z'n recht. De druppels zijn ook mooi.
Ik geniet ook van het maken van dit soort foto's!
Groet, Hans van den Berg

I thought my hoverfly on a Corn flower was OK, but then I saw yours... Compliments, Mike!
Cheers, Dietrich

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