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 Moderated by: Robert, richw, jk  
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blackfox



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can't find anywhere else to post it on here so yet another new section ,hopefully other will add to it . I'll start from some taken yesterday with the d7200 and sigma 150-600 C  handheld 

















.

Robert



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Very nice Jeff, outstanding for hand held with such a big lens.

Yes, anyone with close up's of insects and other nature subjects should post them in this Theme Topic.  Thanks for starting it Jeff.

chrisbet



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Before I had a long lens - had to get up close to catch this one.



.

blackfox



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nice Chris

jk



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Nice images Jeff.
Excellent bluebell and butterfly shots.

All shot with the 150-600mm or some with the 60mm?

Graham Whistler



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More good work Jeff well done not much wrong with that lens.Poppy seed from me.

Attachment: PoppySeed0110.jpg (Downloaded 238 times)

Graham Whistler



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A flower pix for Robert from our garden!

Attachment: _DSC0571.jpg (Downloaded 231 times)

blackfox



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pair of courting damselflies from thurs 
.

jk



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I think that 150-600 is undersold.
Long telephoto, macro, general purpose lens.
:-)

Graham Whistler



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I agree with JK you have a very good lens and skill to use it to get quality sharp images.
More modes close-up in garden today with D500 and standard 18-140 AF-S Lens. I find this is a super lens for most "normal Photography" and as sharp as many other Nikon lenses at several times the price and I picked this one up 2nd hand for £250.

Attachment: _DSC1631.jpg (Downloaded 216 times)

blackfox



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I still think my old panasonic g80 micro four thirds and the Leica 100-400 is better for close ups though here's one the wife took yesterday with my old kit the image speaks for itself and she's not used it much at all yet 
.

blackfox



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a bee in the front garden this morning , love the motion blur from the wings , this is with the sigma lens and the D3s .. still practicing with this one 
.

blackfox



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some from last nights walk along the estuary d7200 + nikon 60mm macro 


.

Graham Whistler



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You live in a wonderful area Jeff, more good pixs!

Last edited on Wed Jul 17th, 2019 09:32 by Graham Whistler

Iain



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Another one with the sigma 150-600mm and D500. This one was short listed on outdoor photographer of the year.
If you look the right of the stick you can see the Exuvia it came from.

Four-spot-chaser by Iain Clyne, on Flickr

jk



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Cracking good photo Iain.
So sharp and great capture to have the exuvia as well.

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Ian thats as good as it gets!

blackfox



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another fun day with the 60mm macro yesterday ,getting to like this lens a lot ,light and easy to use 











.

Graham Whistler



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Jeff some of those are working very well. Not easy and depth of field is never enough. The stacking tests I did would not help you at all with live inscets! I think some of the experts in this field freze the poor old insect then take stacking series of images in a studio or very wind free place. Not my interest and way out of my comfort zone.
Your doing well keep up the good work.

blackfox



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Cheers graham , I have owned and used several macro lenses over the years in various lengths I.e 105/150/180  but this little 60mm seems to outdo them all ,it’s so light and manouverable considering getting a  LED  ring light flash  for it now I have sorted out the filter threads .. not bad results for a £45 lens

Robert



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I bought one new and when I got my D1 it was my only lens because I sold all my other Nikon lenses and gear inc. my beloved Bronica S2a to buy my first serious digital camera, it seemed the way things were moving at the time.

It was a while before I could afford the 80-200 f/2.8 to accompany it.

In the end I replaced it with an old Nikkor micro 55mm f/2.8 ai which I much prefer.

blackfox



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Please expand on that statement Robert , why is a shorter manual focus lens preferable over the 60mm . There seem to be quiet a few around at a good price SELL ME ON ONE

jk



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For macro with static objects (therefore not wildlife) then a wideangle or shorter focal length lens provides greater magnification for less extension.   

Also never forget that a simple reversed lens makes for a great macro.
Just get one of these or similar.
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/52mm-Macro-Reverse-Lens-Adapter-Protection-Filter-Ring-Nikon-AI-F-Mount/273623831652?hash=item3fb5405464:g:7YAAAOSwVAtcH~5h

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/52mm-Reverse-Macro-Adapter-For-Nikon-Al-F-Mount-Lens-Protection-Filter-Ring-UK/262872713011?epid=920861202&hash=item3d346f4733:g:KC4AAOSw2gxYwE2H

Robert



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I think the simple early lenses are easier to use because the focal length is constant. The focal length of the 60D varies considerably to enable the lens to be autofocus.  I almost never use autofocus with a close up lens because I want to focus exactly where I choose not where the camera chooses.  It was handy when I copied about 3500 pages of text to convert to PDF because as I turned the pages it compensated for the gradual change in distance between the camera and the current page in the book which was about 2inches thick.  For photographing three dimensional subjects particularly flowers and insects I want full control.  The AF generally focusses on the central parts closest to the camera but that can waste half the available depth of focus of the air in front of the flower when I could have been focusing further back into the flower and yet still giving acceptably sharp detail in the front parts.

I understand the local length of the 60D reduces to something like 40mm to enable it to get to 1:1 by AF, that isn't what I want.  The AF 105D pulls the same trick. With the earlier design, 105 f/4 and 55 f/2.8, the elements all move together in one group as you focus, with the AF-D lenses they move in two or three groups rather like a zoom lens as you focus.

My copy of the 60D developed fungus and I was offered a 55, f/2.8 which I snapped up.  I sold the lens on eBay and the buyer kicked off because he didn't understand that to get the AE to work you have to lock the aperture ring.  The argument went on for some days before he finally realised his mistake.  I don't regret parting with the AF-D version, on the contrary I am very happy with the older one with which I have taken some of my best flower pictures, generally moving back and forth (rather than focusing) to get the DoF where I want it for optimal focus.

Generally the older, Nikkor micro 55 f/2.8 lenses are reasonably priced because most buyers want AF.  Try one and see for yourself.

jk



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Is this what you were talking about......
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Nikon-55mm-f2-8-Micro-Nikkor-Macro-Prime-Lens/233303570624?hash=item3651f9f8c0:g:23wAAOSw1Glc2d1J

This is a nice setup.  Shame it is in USA.
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/NIKON-MICRO-NIKKOR-105mm-F-4-Ai-LENS-NIKON-PN-11-EXT-TUBE-1-1-MACRO-MINT/233299113754?_trkparms=aid%3D555018%26algo%3DPL.SIM%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D57923%26meid%3D1f4a24726c7c43d4bf0d468b29798bb2%26pid%3D100005%26rk%3D3%26rkt%3D12%26sd%3D233303570624%26itm%3D233299113754%26pg%3D2047675&_trksid=p2047675.c100005.m1851

jk



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This is a very nice lens.
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Nikon-AIS-105mm-f4-Micro-Nikkor-Lens-Graded-EXC-5690/232328168771?hash=item3617d68543:g:xUoAAOSwMvpb1aAU

Robert



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jk wrote:
Is this what you were talking about......
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Nikon-55mm-f2-8-Micro-Nikkor-Macro-Prime-Lens/233303570624?hash=item3651f9f8c0:g:23wAAOSw1Glc2d1J

This is a nice setup.  Shame it is in USA.
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/NIKON-MICRO-NIKKOR-105mm-F-4-Ai-LENS-NIKON-PN-11-EXT-TUBE-1-1-MACRO-MINT/233299113754?_trkparms=aid%3D555018%26algo%3DPL.SIM%26ao%3D1%26asc%3D57923%26meid%3D1f4a24726c7c43d4bf0d468b29798bb2%26pid%3D100005%26rk%3D3%26rkt%3D12%26sd%3D233303570624%26itm%3D233299113754%26pg%3D2047675&_trksid=p2047675.c100005.m1851
Yes, exactly.

The 105 with the PN11 is lovely and not too expensive really, shipping and VAT are the killers from the US.

I have thoughts about making my own PN11 using the lathe, the F mount isn't that difficult to make, just needs precision and patience with some custom tooling which is easy enough to make.

Robert



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jk wrote:
This is a very nice lens.
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Nikon-AIS-105mm-f4-Micro-Nikkor-Lens-Graded-EXC-5690/232328168771?hash=item3617d68543:g:xUoAAOSwMvpb1aAU
That's the same as mine, superb bokeh, I've had mine three or four years now, it's really good when I need to throw the background out of focus nicely, yet show off a beautiful flower.  Can't remember what I paid.

I do remember the first time I used it was at the Pitlochry Explorers Garden.

blackfox



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I’m away for a few days next week so I won’t order anything yet in case I miss the delivery , sort it out when back

blackfox



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few more butterfly shots from today with the 60mm macro could really have done with a longer lens ,but I have a manual focus Tokina 60-300 here that has a half decent macro at the top end I might use tomorrow. 





.

blackfox



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couple of shots from my panasonic MFT rig today . shows how close you can get with a 800mm equiv. reach 





.

blackfox



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a couple from my new 28-105mm D lens this morning . the macro seems to work far better on this than any previous zoom with macro facility lenses I have used previously 


.

blackfox



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another of Saturdays shots , changed the p.o.v from upright to horizontal seems to work better imho
.

Robert



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It's handier not to have to scroll the screen...  That is a stunner, the contrast and colour depth is really eye catching, well done, what camera - lens?!

blackfox



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It was my D7200 and the Nikon 28-105mm D with a macro switch rob ... loving this little lens

Robert



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Thanks Jeff, on here (in my view) the camera/lens are almost as important as the image.

To me that's what it's all about, being able to see what various combinations of camera/lens can achieve.  In this case a relatively modest lens coupled with a (not exactly new) mid range body produces superb images.
The D7200 should be flying off the shelves as a response to your output, well done. :devil:

jk



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Well said Robert.
That reinforces my point that I said in the lens thread!

blackfox



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Why thank you kind sir , ( he writes while blushing )

Iain



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Caught this one in flight, dull day with a grey water background.

DSC_8488-Edit by Iain Clyne, on Flickr

jk



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Great shot  Iain.
Very sharp!

Eric



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Iain wrote:
Caught this one in flight, dull day with a grey water background.

DSC_8488-Edit by Iain Clyne, on Flickr
Well done Iain. Super technique 👍

Iain



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D500 and the sigma 150-600 @600

jk



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Good combo. Best you can get.

Eric



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jk wrote:
Good combo. Best you can get. Don’t forget the nut that holds the steering wheel. ;-)

Robert



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Eric wrote:
Don’t forget the nut that holds the steering wheel. ;-) Absolutely,  to emphasise and embellish the metaphor, two examples spring to mind...

Monte Carlo rally, (I think, from memory) Timo Makinnon? won one of the alpine pass stages in a works Mini Cooper, he ran rings around the competitors times, there was a protest which the French organisers were minded to uphold. So the team went to the nearest large town and picked up a bog standard Mini Cooper from the showroom, made a few basic safety checks, then Timo ran the car up the same timed section.  His time was within very few seconds of his previous time set during the rally proper.  Reason prevailed, his original time stood.

Nearer home, at Oulton Park during testing, Roger Clark and Tony Mason called by.  David Llewellin, Welsh rally driver offered Roger and Tony the opportunity to try his latest car around the circuit.  Bear in mind Roger had been retired for quite a while... David took the time to explain the intricacies of the brake balance override and the importance of keeping the engine within a specific rev range etc.  On a cold lap, never having driven the car before, his time was within 3 seconds of David's,  he didn't even look at the brake balance mechanism and paid scant regard for the rev range.  This was related by Tony Mason, president of Morcambe car club who was Roger's co-driver and navigator when they won the World Rally Championship, the only British driver to have done so.

Having the right nut behind the wheel is very important.  Which is why I rarely photograph wildlife and greatly admire those who can. ;-)

chrisbet



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Having the right nut in the co-drivers seat is also important - this one was on the Monte, Willy Cave was navigating and told the driver "sharp right" which he did, then the road got very bumpy .... they had turned onto the railway line! 
Told to me by Willy on the Prix des Alpes rally in 2000 :lol:

Robert



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Obviously needed more train ing! LOL :lol:

Eric



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‘Girls just wanna have fun’


.

Eric



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Speckled Bush Cricket...being stalked by the wife.


.

Eric



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The prey...


.

Graham Whistler



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Words fail me great pixs! Toads set of the swimming pool alarm at midnight last night guess who had to sort the problem!

Eric



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We are lucky that our garden attracts a lot of dragon flies this time of the year. Ive only ever managed to catch one in flight and nowhere near as good as Iain’s. Mostly they are perched digesting their catch.  

I’ve posted more serious photos (than the one above 😆 ) in the past but don’t want to resurrect them just to pass on the following observation which may help any less experienced photographers/readers out there wanting to have a go.

Dragon flies like an exposed place to digest their catch, often returning to the same perch after grabbing a gnat. We’ve noticed that they particularly like dead branches (ie without leaves) or even freshly cut branches. Don’t think it’s the fact the branches have been cut so much that the area has been cleared of interfering leaves. Well that’s my theory anyway. 😆  We know that if we prune a tree/shrubs in September the dragonflies will favour it.

Here’s a Mr & Mrs Southern Migrant Hawker.... proving the point.


.

Last edited on Sun Sep 15th, 2019 11:21 by Eric

Eric



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Of course....an exposed garden lantern tip can serve the same purpose for this Darter...


.

Last edited on Sun Sep 15th, 2019 11:09 by Eric

chrisbet



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Maybe they just need the clear space - like a helicopter landing?

Perhaps you should paint a tiny D on the cut end - Dragonfly landing pad?? :lol:

blackfox



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nice Eric

Iain



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chrisbet wrote:
Maybe they just need the clear space - like a helicopter landing?

Perhaps you should paint a tiny D on the cut end - Dragonfly landing pad?? :lol:
:lol:

Nice pics Eric.

I’m hoping to catch a few of the last dragonfly when we are down in Lincoln next month.

blackfox



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one from today hand held with the 100-400 Leica 
.

Iain



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Nice shot Jeff.

blackfox



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thanks iain

jk



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Eric wrote:
The prey...


Hmmm, like that.
On a glass table I guess?.

chrisbet



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Out walking the  this afternoon and my eye was drawn to tiny red flowers in the grass ( which is pretty high now) so hands & knees to get a good close up - flower about 1/4 inch across -



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Iain



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A broad bodied chaser from yesterday.

DI5_2466-Edit by Iain Clyne, on Flickr

Eric



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Iain wrote:
A broad bodied chaser from yesterday.

DI5_2466-Edit by Iain Clyne, on Flickr
Nice shot Iain.  We don’t seem to get those down here ..or I haven’t seen them.  Isn’t it a bit early for dragonflies? Presumable the crazy Spring?  
Saw a damsel fly yesterday but no sign of the big guns yet ☹️

Iain



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It’s the first one I’ve seen up here. We’ve had damsels here for the last two weeks but that’s the first dragon.

I think the warm weather has pushed them on this year.

Graham Whistler



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Super quality image Iain.

Iain



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D500 and 200-500mm @500mm Graham.

jk



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Iain wrote:
D500 and 200-500mm @500mm Graham. IMHO best combo for news, sports and wildlife.

Robert



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chrisbet wrote:
Out walking the  this afternoon and my eye was drawn to tiny red flowers in the grass ( which is pretty high now) so hands & knees to get a good close up - flower about 1/4 inch across -



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I would say it's a tiny orchid. will see if I can id it later.

Eric



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Robert wrote:
I would say it's a tiny orchid. will see if I can id it later. It’s more like a Vetch (wild pea family)

Last edited on Sun May 31st, 2020 20:00 by Eric

chrisbet



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Similar to a vetch but it didn't have the typical pea plant leaves - just a single stalk. Birdsfoot Trefoil?

Eric



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While photographing the baby hedgehog (animal thread) the distinctive ‘drone’ of a cockchafer passed my ear.

It landed next to me but took off in a few seconds. Only a quick grab shot with the iPhone and it was a bit out of focus (or I moved) so heavily sharpened  ...but an amazing creature.


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Last edited on Mon Jun 1st, 2020 23:27 by Eric

Iain



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Another one form me taken today.


DSC_0022-Edit by Iain Clyne, on Flickr

Eric



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Iain wrote:
Another one form me taken today.


DSC_0022-Edit by Iain Clyne, on Flickr
Is that a burrowing wasp, Iain?

Iain



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Not sure Eric, I’m not so good on insects.

Graham Whistler



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Ian it looks very good to me!

Iain



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Eric, I've been told its a Soldier Beatle.

Eric



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Iain wrote:
Eric, I've been told its a Soldier Beatle. Thanks for that. I did wonder if it was some sort of beetle as it’s got the ‘wing casings’ in front of the wings.

GeoffR

 

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Spotted this at Box Hill yesterday, not macro though 70-200 f2,8 VR11 with TC17 E 11 on a D4.

Attachment: _DSC3785_M.jpg (Downloaded 133 times)

Eric



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GeoffR wrote:
Spotted this at Box Hill yesterday, not macro though 70-200 f2,8 VR11 with TC17 E 11 on a D4. That’s lovely Geoff. It looks in good nick too. Whenever I get a butterfly it’s always got tatty wings or scales falling off.

What butterfly is it?

GeoffR

 

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According to "UK Butterflies" it is a Marbled White. There were other species but they rarely settled for long enough to photograph them.

Eric



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GeoffR wrote:
According to "UK Butterflies" it is a Marbled White. There were other species but they rarely settled for long enough to photograph them. Well it’s lovely. An old friend of mine switched over his main photography interest to butterflies. He gets some excellent results. Not sure I’ve got the dedication....birds move around too much already!

GeoffR

 

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Eric wrote:
Well it’s lovely. An old friend of mine switched over his main photography interest to butterflies. He gets some excellent results. Not sure I’ve got the dedication....birds move around too much already! I find that butterflies are too active for me, most of the time, as are these.

Attachment: _DSC3860_M.jpg (Downloaded 114 times)

Iain



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Spot the Red Admiral.


DI5_3586 by Iain Clyne, on Flickr

Eric



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Iain wrote:
Spot the Red Admiral.


DI5_3586 by Iain Clyne, on Flickr

That’s a funny name for a red admiral. We called ours Nigel. 😂 

Cracking bit of camouflage though.

Iain



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Eric wrote:
That’s a funny name for a red admiral. We called ours Nigel. 😂 

Cracking bit of camouflage though.
:lol: It just started to open its wings as I pressed the shutter otherwise it would have been harder to see.

Eric



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What’s this one Iain?



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Iain



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Eric wrote:
What’s this one Iain?



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It’s a Gatekeeper Eric.

Graham Whistler



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Well done Ian super lighting a very dramatic well taken pix!

Iain



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Another one from the other day, a White Ermine Moth. Not a great shot as I couldn't get a clear shot at it.


DI5_3543 by Iain Clyne, on Flickr

blackfox



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hi gang still around 14 weeks of lockdown served not done much bar mooch around the gardens , as things now ease up a bit round here started getting out again .. so heres one from tues saw this grass snake being attacked by a magpie in the road so I stopped to see if it was o.k the magpie flew off the snake posed for a few pics then slithered off into the grass 

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Graham Whistler



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Jeff good to see you back and what a 100% super shot to kick off with!

Eric



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Welcome back Geoff....great image. Looking forward to more. 👍

jk



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Welcome back Geoff.
Nice shot, great sharpness and composition.

Iain



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Nice shot Jeff. Very obliging of it to let you get some shots for saving it from the Magpie.

Iain



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A banded demoiselle(male) taken at 600mm


D44_4803 by Iain Clyne, on Flickr

jk



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Nice shot Iain.

blackfox



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hi gang still lurking not been getting out much and then just doing a few butterflies etc so heres a few from last week 

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blackfox



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due to all the adverse publicity over the olympus re-structuring I have looked at nikon again plus canon and Sony .. most options although workable will either entail more money than I can logically spend or more weight than I can comfortably carry around .. so for the time being im sticking with olympus .. 
    on a brighter note we have a villa booked in majorca for next may near porto Pollensa which by all accounts is superb for birding .. covid 19 permitting of course ... never been before so quite excited

Graham Whistler



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Super photos no problem with your Olympus why change it?

Eric



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blackfox wrote:
due to all the adverse publicity over the olympus re-structuring I have looked at nikon again plus canon and Sony .. most options although workable will either entail more money than I can logically spend or more weight than I can comfortably carry around .. so for the time being im sticking with olympus .. 
    on a brighter note we have a villa booked in majorca for next may near porto Pollensa which by all accounts is superb for birding .. covid 19 permitting of course ... never been before so quite excited
Unless you are planning on changing your camera, I don’t see why Olympus restructuring should have any bearing on your photography?

As Graham says, when you can capture images like those, why change?

blackfox



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it was an initial reaction to what at the time seemed like shock news , with all the usual "I told you so " pundits putting there two bobs worth in .. but after the dont panic effect kicked in and also seeing the growing number of converts Im happy to stick with it .

    also my change in p/p to incorporate topaz de-noise Ai as a permanent part of my workflow has helped with any initial doubts over noise 

thank you both for your kind remarks as well I value all of them

jk



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I agree with Eric.  The time to worry about Olympus is when you cant find anymore of their stuff on ebay.  I think by then we will all be long gone!

Iain



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Nice shot Jeff.

Iain



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A Drone Fly from today take at 600mm.


500_0708 by Iain Clyne, on Flickr

Last edited on Tue Jul 28th, 2020 17:37 by Iain

Iain



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Another one from today, this time a Bumble Bee. D500 and Sigma 150-600 at 600mm.


500_0956 by Iain Clyne, on Flickr

jk



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Beautiful shot, Iain.

Iain



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Thanks Jonathan.

Graham Whistler



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Not my field but it was too good to miss in our garden this morning in between gusts of wind. Nikon D500 Nikon 105mm Macro AF-S 1/125 sec f11 ISO 1600. This was best of several bit more DOF would have helped so went back for another go and wind had removed my new best friend.

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Last edited on Wed Aug 26th, 2020 10:54 by Graham Whistler

blackfox



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not been on for a while due to covid and lockdown etc . so not been out much . also I have been waiting for the new olympus 100-400 lens to arrive which I bought mid week . its the same focal length as my old panasonic version but obviously much newer and has been getting rave reviews .
  
 so heres a few shots for starters quite impressed so far all shots hand held at 400mm x 2x crop = 800mm FF 

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Iain



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Looks to be good Jeff, nice and sharp.

Eric



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I didn’t think there was anything wrong with the other lens, Jeff!

Wasn’t it a Leica version?

Great images by the way 👍

blackfox



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Eric wrote:
I didn’t think there was anything wrong with the other lens, Jeff!

Wasn’t it a Leica version?

Great images by the way 👍
it suffered at distance Eric ,great close up ... but thats it . the new one has far better i.s  and you can also use both 1.4 and 2.0x Tc's giving a potential 1600mm reach in FF terms . used it yesterday with the 1.4 tc and its razor sharp even hand held

blackfox



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couple from today with the new lens 

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Eric



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I liked the water droplets on the surrounding reeds. Almost like 💎s 

Ok ....maybe a bit too artyfarty. :lol:



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Iain



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Nice shots everyone. Dragonflys are few and far between up here.

Eric



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Flight stopover on the patio door….



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Robert



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This is one of my neighbours, lives in the pond just near my caravan with thousands of tadpoles and some other aquatic friends!

Image made with iPhone 

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