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Saturday, 4 January 2014

Night Walk At Venus Drive ( 03 Jan 2014)

My friend and I decided to go for a night macro photography session at the Venus Drive.  The weather was dry and perfect for photographing beetles. For this session I am trying out taking macro photographs with only lights from a LED floodlight (i.e. no flash). Majority of the photographs were taken using setting as 1/160, F11 and ISO 800.

The first beetle that came into view was a small 4 mm Leaf Beetle hiding under a leaf.


The next beetle that appeared was a Chafer Beetle (Apogonia expeditionis) which are commonly seen in the night.


On the same low tree were this pair of Chafer Beetle (Adoretus compressus).


Under a leaf of another low tree was this lone Ladybird Beetle (Henosepilachna cucurbitae).

[Afternote 14012014 - I have wrongly identify this Ladybird Beetle, it should be Epilachna admirabilis. ]


At this point in time we are still on the trail and we hurriedly photographed this lovely Leaf Beetle and headed towards the entrance of the trail.


On the trunk of a tree at the entrance to the trail was this small 3 mm Fungus Beetle. Many of the small beetles look black at a glance but reveal their true colors when you zoom into them.


Moving to a rotten tree trunk, I found this small 4 mm Fungus Beetle (Platydema unicornis) wondering about on some fungus. This particular beetle should be female as it lacks the horn-like protrusion.


On the same log was another type of Fungus Beetle (Eumorphus assamensis). This type of beetle can be easily found in Venus Drive but this was the only one that I encounter during the trip.


Moving to the clearing where there are a number of fallen logs where many different beetles can be found. On a fallen log near to the trail path, I found a few of this ball like beetle. This beetle belongs to the Ceratocanthidae family.


Hiding under a young palm leaf was a small 3 mm first-time-encountered Fungus Beetle.


Another Fungus Beetle was seen on the side of a fallen log.


Curiously there was a Darklng Beetle that was on a leaf nearby. You can usually find this type of beetles in groups foraging on fungus-laden rotting log.


More fungus beetles encountered and this two were on a patch of white fungus growth.


Another Darkling Beetle was found next to the above Fungus Beetle. Notice the interesting patterned beetle larvae next to it. The beetle larvae seemed to be that of the Darkling Beetle.


I was surprise to find this Net-winged Beetle resting on a leaf. It is the first time I encounter this type of beetle in the night.


On a small plant near by was this small first-time-encountered 2 mm Fungus Beetle.


On a tree trunk was this long beetle larvae.


A the base of the same tree was this small 4 mm Darkling Beetle.


Another beetle on a fallen log.


On another fallen log were several of this Fungus Weevil (Eucorynus crassicornis).


On a nearby tree was a group this tiny 2 mm Fungus Beetles.


On yet another fallen log was a group of this small 5 mm Ground Beetle (Pericalus tetrastigma).


On the same fallen log was this beetle larvae.


Still on the same fallen log, a different group of Ground Beetle (Minuthodes multisetosa).


Resting on a fallen log was this entirely black Darkling Beetle.


Moving away from the clearing, I found a Fungus Weevil (Stiboderes impressus). This is the second time that I came across this beetle.


On a rotten tree trunk was this female Darkling Beetle (Cryphaeus gazelle).


Another Ground Beetle (Catascopus dalbertisi) was found on the log.


Near by on a tree were several small (~ 2 mm) Fungus Beetles.


On the same tree was this first-time-encountered Fungus Beetle.


On a different tree was this first-time-encountered Fungus Weevil.


Moving on, a Tiger Beetle (Cicindela aurulenta) resting on a small plant.


Next to the Tiger Beetle was this Fungus Beetle (Eumorphus quadriguttatus).


While looking out for beetles, I came across several partly eaten Bess Beetle. Just as I was lamenting about the destruction of such not so common beetle, this beetle was found crawling on the ground.


On a rotten log was several of this Fungus Beetle.


On the same rotten log was this first-time-encountered beetle. This beetle is in the same Ceratocanthidae family.


On the same log was another 3 mm first-time-encountered beetle.


On a tree nearby was this Fungus Beetle.


A 15 mm first-time-encountered Long Horned Beetle was seen on a plant and when it was spooked, it hugged the plant like a koala bear. After a few shots of this beetle, it dropped to the ground as a defensive mechanism.


Another Fungus Weevil was found running on the trunk of a tree nearby to the Long Horned Beetle.


The next beetle was an exciting find. This is a first-time-encountered Ladybird Beetle. I particularly like the green eyes of this beetle.


Further down the trail was this Darkling Beetle which I have not encountered for a while.


On the same tree with the Darkling Beetle was this beetle larvae.


Just when we were about to leave the place, a first-time-encountered Weevil Beetle was seen resting on a palm leaf. It was rather sensitive to the camera flashes and dropped to the ground to play dead after a few shots of the camera flash.


While my friend was photographing the Weevil Beetle, I found anpther Fungus Beetle on a tree trunk.


The finale of the trip was a pair of first-time-encountered Long Horned Beetle. The female was about 10 mm and male about 6 mm particularly like the bright orange coloration of this beetle.


This trip was exceptionally fruitful with us finding about 42 different types of beetle, and out of which 10 are first-time-encountered beetles.

This is a new experience for me in terms of night macro without flash and I find it workable but challenging especially when the subject is moving rapidly. I find using flash is more reliable and it is less likely to have motion-blur.