Getting lucky

I went out much too late this morning or so I thought. I decided to go to Wong Chuk Yeung again. The short drive up a very steep hill produced the first surprise of the day. A Chinese cobra in the road – definitely alive and kicking and I had to swerve to miss it. Just when I had been think ing how rarely I see snakes locally.

My first walk around WCY produced very little but I did get to see the Spotted sawtooth again and this time I managed a shot of the open wings. It did not rest with wings open at all. Just a quick flick now and again. And it hardly settled. So this was just hit the shutter and hope.

Prioneris thestylis

I also started to see some dragonfly activity. A Forest chaser was a dragonfly I had not seen here before but they are common so I suspect I have not looked often enough. Here are male, male in flight and female:

Lyriothemis elegantissima

Lyriothemis elegantissima – female

The first two are really over-extending the lens – a 300mm F2.8 + 2x TC  – but they will do as record shots. The same kit was used for the female as I did not want to waste time taking the TC of in case she flew. However she was much closer and easier to get at.

Then I noticed a stick insect hanging from the foliage. I like these things – they are not rare but you have to look hard to see them. They are well camouflaged.

Entoria sp. – Stick insect

And a beetle provided some closer entertainment.

Epicauta mannerheimi

And to round off my walk, 2 different sorts (and stages) of butterfly. Above, larvae of the Large Faun:

Faunis eumeus eumeus

And an imago of the Common Jester

Symbrenthia lilaea lunica

I do wish I’d got the wing termen sharp 😦

Next time I may try the 400mm F4 for the dragonflies as close focussing is not the problem. The trouble is IQ degradation with the 2x TC. A bad workman always blames his tools? Probably.

A busy day tomorrow so no time to play but there’s always another day, if I’m spared.

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6 thoughts on “Getting lucky

  1. Andrew, The first thing my father taught me, after I bought a car, was to never drive over a snake as they can get caught up under the car and when you stop they may wiggle out and bite you. Thankfully it has never happened to me. The other useful tip is if you break your windscreen, knock out all the broken glass and wind up your side windows and you are fine to continue as long as it doesn’t rain. I had to drive 200 miles over NSW roads using this technique and it was fine, except I spent several days removing all the bugs from inside the rear window

  2. The mid-flight and the female Lyriothemis elegantissima are amazing! Also love the stick insect – how on earth did you managed to spot it?? Your keen eyesight obviously served you well on the road – glad you managed to miss the snake:)

    • Thanks Kaushal. I spotted the stick insect by a small movement and then picked up the colour. Birders tend to be used to seeing movements that others don’t notice. Sometimes the long hours in the field pay off.

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