Emerging damselfly slideshow

Recently, I resurrected some interesting images produced when I had the opportunity to witness several damsel flies emerge on a warm day while photographing on a local property. This series was shot one year ago on April 14, 2010 in a pond here in Austin.

The insect is a male Desert Firetail damselfly (Telebasis salva). It is emerging from the aquatic larval state to the winged flying adult. The nymph has climbed out of the water, inflated itself with air and begins to split its skin on the top of the head and thorax. It then begins to pull itself completely out of its skin. The wings and abdomen inflate as blood is pumped through them. This newly emerged teneral is very vulnerable and barely able to fly. It may remain here for quite a while until its muscles and structures harden. It then establishes a territory where it will mate and begin the cycle once again.

The series of images was made with a Nikon D2Xs digital camera with a Micro Nikkor 200mm F4 macro lens. For this sequence, I shot 88 JPEG images over a period of one and a half hours. I used 58 of those images to make the video clip in Lightroom 3.3. No computer enhancement or manipulation was done. The series is synchronized to the instrumental soundtrack “Africa” (#1009) by InstantMusicNow.com, for which I paid a fee for the reproduction rights.

Thanks to my dear friend and colleague, Cindy Dyer, for her YouTube post of my 1080p video file and to my friend and odonate specialist,  Dr. John Abbott, for his detailed knowledge of damselflies.

© Brian Loflin. All rights reserved.


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