Posts Tagged ‘camouflage’

During most of the year the bright red body of Blue-faced Meadowhawk dragonfly (Sympetrum ambiguum) would really stand out, but in the late autumn, it blends in pretty well with the vegetation. However, it is almost impossible to conceal this species’ stunning blue eyes and turquoise face, which cause it to stand out from even a very cluttered background.

Blue-faced Meadowhawk

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Usually it is hard for me to find frogs, because they blend in so well with their surroundings, but that certainly was not the case with this bright green frog. Doesn’t he realize how much he stands out in that environment? I was able to spot him from quite a distance away.


© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved

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Usually when I see a deer, it turns and runs away, sometimes stopping to gaze back at be from a distance just beyond the range of the lens that I have on my camera at that moment. Recently, however, I encountered a deer that seemed content to look at me as I looked at him. It sounds like a nature photographer’s dream come true.

The biggest challenge was that he was in the middle of a mostly dried-up marshy field full of cattails and other tall growth that made it impossible to get a clear view of the young buck, a white-tailed deer, I believe. It became pretty clear to me that auto-focus was not a viable option—the camera seemed to really want to focus on some arbitrary branch rather than on the deer—so I relied on manual focusing. It was also in the middle of the day, so shadows were pretty harsh. During the protracted period of time that the deer stayed in the same little area, I shot a lot of photos and these are two of my favorites. You’ll note that the deer blends in pretty well with the background. If he had remained absolutely still, I may very well have walked on by without seeing him.

Deer in the cattails

White-tailed buck in a field of cattails

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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Yesterday I was at a nearby pond photographing mostly dragonflies. After shooting them I decided to make a quick walk around the pond (it’s only a small man-made pond) to see what other subjects I could find. I managed to find a colorful butterfly, a small green heron, and some lotus flowers that I will post later, assuming the photos came out ok.

The subject that really caught my attention, though, was a frog. Really? Yes, really.

I was leaning over the green-colored pond water, gazing at a distant dragonfly when I happened to glance down to my right. There, almost camouflaged in what my friends say is duckweed, was a semi-submerged frog. I was able to get my camera’s lens down pretty low and got in close and captured an image I really like. The frog’s gold-ringed eyes shine out clearly amidst all of the individual particles of duckweed that cover much of his expressionless face.

There are a couple of blades of grass that were partially blocking my view to the frog but they blurred out and are not really much of a problem.  After I took some shots, though, I decided to try to carefully remove one of those offending blades. As I made the effort,  the frog, who had remained motionless up to then, literally leaped into action. He sprung powerfully into the air and skipped across the surface of the water, like a rock throw by a dad showing his son how to skip rocks.

I was so startled by his sudden motion that I almost fell over into the water. Later in the day I did end up getting wet when I belatedly noticed that one foot was planted in the water while I was intently focusing on composing a shot. I guess that’s the price of being a photographer.

Hiding frog

© Michael Q. Powell. All rights reserved.

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