|[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note|
|On one of our rare hot sunny days this summer went for a stroll in the grounds of Dunham Massey Hall, a National Trust property. The grounds are substantially a deer park where Fallow Deer have been contained for 300 years. The pasture-woodland that was thus created is being sympathetically managed by NT and fresh planting of native trees in protected areas is proceeding to maintain the eco-system.|
There is an Elizabethan water-mill on the estate, originally used for corn-grinding and latterly as a saw-mill. There are ponds in the grounds that were built to retain water for the mill, fill the moat and provide enjoyment for all creatures including the many who throng there from the Manchester conurbation.
My newly acquired IXUS is travelling nearly everywhere with me and I'm learning its limits and enjoying its pleasures.
The dragonfly (identification?) seemed to favour this particular perch coming back time after time as my clumsy efforts to get close enough to capture a meaningfull picture scared it away. At full zoom I held the camera at arms length over the edge of the pool. In danger of having a cooling plunge I was 'rewarded' with this pic. I like the wings but the lower body has picked up too much sunlight and the upper body seems fuzzy (do they have 'fur' there?). It was really a job for my 300D :)
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I admire the effort put into obtaining this pic, it must be hard to focus properly when holding the camera at arm's length ;-) I think, you've managed to place the main focus on the far wing which shows very good detail.
You've also been working against the light, and for that reason the DF lacks details on the side nearest to the camera. It may sound weird, but for this kind of job you should stop *down* on exposure (if your camera can do that) and use fill flash to lighten up the near side.
Concerning ID there's not enough detail for me to be specific, but the shape and the behaviour described (watching his territory) would indicate a male, and the shape of the tail (rather flat) might indicate some kind of a skimmer. Maybe Robert can say more..
If this was taken near your home, it might be an idea to go back again, as they often set up territory and stay in the same area for days. Happy hunting ;-))
Well the identity of the much battered dragonfly is a Male Four Spot Chaser (Libellula Quadrimaculata) Bente`s advise to go back when the light is going the other way would be good so you could shoot with the light. This looks like a favoured perch which they will return too time after time. You could of used flash to fill in the blanks also.
- [2004-08-09 16:39]
Good one Peter, it's a shame that the focus on the fly wasn't quite right as it would have been a very very nice photo indeed. The composition, colours and light is superb. Welcome to TN, look forward to seeing more of your photos.