Birds of North Carolina Coast – Seaside Sparrow

Seaside Sparrow, Pea Island NWR, NC. 896 mm focal length equivalent, f/8, 1/160 sec, ISO-640
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Wasp Mantidfly – Neither a Wasp, a Mantid, nor a Fly!

 

Wasp Mantidfly (Climaciella brunnea) 234mm focal length equivalent, f/16, 1/125 sec., ISO-640, with flash

That’s right, this special one visited my home garden one afternoon and allowed me to grab some shots. The mantidfly are categorized in the order Neuroptera along with the lacewings.

Probably obvious, this species is believed to mimic the paper wasps (Polistes) as a potential deterrent to predation. Without a close glance, it would be easy to mistake this species for a wasp with the potential to deliver a nasty sting.

As if their appearance wasn’t crazy enough, larvae of the Mantispinae, the subfamily this species belongs to, feed by paristizing spiders and their eggs!

Wasp Mantidfly (Climaciella brunnea) 234mm focal length equivalent, f/16, 1/125 sec., ISO-640, with flash

-OZB

Missouri Orchids – Purple Fringless

Purple Fringless Orchid (Platanthera peramoena) 234 mm focal length equivalent, f/6.3, 1/125 sec. ISO-160, focus stack of four exposures
Purple Fringless Orchid (Platanthera peramoena) 234 mm focal length equivalent, f/6.3, 1/80 sec. ISO-250, focus stack of five exposures
Purple Fringless Orchid with Eastern Pondhawk, 234 mm focal length equivalent, f/6.3, 1/160 sec. ISO-125

Eastern Collared Lizard

Eastern Collared Lizard – female. 520 mm focal length equivalent, f/11, 1/160 sec. ISO-200

These photos were taken on a WGNSS Nature Photography Group field trip into the St. Francois Mountains in early June, 2019.

Eastern Collared Lizard – female. 520 mm focal length equivalent, f/8, 1/200 sec. ISO-160

Along with a couple of female eastern collared lizards, we found quite a few other herps of interest.

Eastern Collared Lizard – female. 406 mm focal length equivalent, f/6.3, 1/320 sec. ISO-200

These lizards are really great photographic subjects. They are relatively easy to photograph, allowing for watching while they bask in the sunlight of a clear day without much manipulation or interference necessary.