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Sunday, 31 July 2016

Morning Walk At Venus Drive (30 Jul 2016)

I have missed my usual weekly macro session for two weeks straight due to the rainy weather. For this week session, I decided to go for a morning walk at Venus Drive since the weather has been pretty wet for the entire week and the chances of finding any beetles would be at Venus Drive.

I was looking forward to the session as I have never tested out my dual-flash macro set-up in the day. With much excitement and anticipation I reached the place and I was surprised to find that the construction works at the place has progressed quite a fair bit compared to the last time I was there. To my great disappointment when I took my first test shot of a fly, the dual flash did not fired. Just then I realised that I have forgotten the master remote trigger. This would be a bummer if not for my backup flash-lite.

Because of the last minute set-up and also the overcast sky, the quality of the photographs taken were not too ideal but suffice for documenting the trip. Here's a photograph of one of the few jumping spiders encountered during the trip.

The first beetle for the trip was a Leaf Beetle (Lema rufotestacea) at some low bushes.

Moving further down the trail, I am glad to find a number of this Ant-like Flower Beetle (Anthelephila cyanea) on a low tree.

Near to the Ant-like Flower Beetle was a Spiny Leaf Beetle found at a patch of tall grasses. This particular specimen was so skittish that I was not able to get a good photograph of it before it flew away.

On a tree along the trail were several of this beetle larvae. This is a good sign that beetles are still doing well despite the recent odd weather - sometimes very hot and other times rainy.

On a fallen palm tree, I was surprised to find this 5 mm Fungus Weevil that remained motionless while it was being photographed.

On another fallen log was a 12 mm Darkling Beetle. It was rather odd to find this in the day as this type of Darkling Beetle is pretty sensitive to movement and light, even in the night.

Near to the fallen log, I found this lovely Fungus Beetle.

While I walked slowly down the trail, this bright red Net-winged Beetle landed right in front of me on a leaf.

Coming to another fallen log, my hairs stood on ends when I see a trail of these small brown ants. I have mentioned a fair bit about these ants as they packed a nasty bite when they get onto you. I have reported my concerns to NPark about the infestations of this type of ants at the Admiralty Park which seemed to be the worse so far among the various parks in Singapore. Hopefully NPark is doing something about the infestation while it is "renovating" the park.

The impact of the infestation may endangered the lives of others critters found in our parks, which this photograph of a Fungus Beetle being attacked by the ants next to the trail of ants illustrates.

Although I tried my best to quickly photograph the attacked beetle and move away, I was still not spared of several bites up my legs by these reddish brown ants. After being bitten, I was extra careful when I examined another fallen tree log where this Fungus Weevil was found.

Near to the Fungus Weevil was this Fungus Beetle (Eumorphus quadriguttatus quadriguttatus).

Next to the Fungus Beetle was a interesting Fungus Weevil that has a pair of exceptionally long antennae.

Moving further down the trail, I found this lone Leaf Beetle (Graphops curtipennis) on a leaf.

A surprise find was this Darkling Beetle (Phymatosum rufonotatum) on a dead tree branch.

On a leaf nearby was this small 3 mm Weevil Beetle having its breakfast.

On a rubber tree nearby was this Fungus Beetle resting on a leaf.

Running along the length of a fallen log nearby was a Tiger Beetle (Cicindela chrysippe).

Walking down the trail, I came to a spot where several of this white Ladybird Beetle were found. This is one of my favorite beetles, but also an extremely difficult beetle to photograph during the day.

Zipping in and out of some low bushes was this 5 mm first-time-encounter Pintail Beetle.

Flying around at the same spot was this more commonly encountered Pintail Beetle called Tumbling Flower Beetle (Glipa malaccana). Pintail Beetles are usually missed because they looked very much like houseflies when they are flying.

At a patch of Singapore  Rhododendron plant (Melastoma malabathricum) were several of this Leaf Beetle (Argopus brevis).

Near to the Leaf Beetle was a tiny 1 mm Leaf Beetle (Eucyclomera nigricollis).

Further down the trail was a dead standing tree where this first-time-encounter Checkered Beetle was found.

Another Checkered Beetle on the same tree.

There were several woodpiles by the side of the trail and on a fresh woodpile was this Ground Beetle (Pericalus tetrastigma) on top of the white sap from the tree.

I was almost near to the end of the trail when this Pintail Beetle was found on a low bush.

An interesting find was this roundish 4 mm Darkling Beetle that was moving about in the leaf litters on the ground.

Near to the exit were several of this 2 mm Darkling Beetles on a small tree.

On another tree were several of this 1 mm Fungus Beetles.

The departing shot for the trip was a odd one - a stack of three Darkling Beetles one on top of the other.

Despite the boo-boo of not bringing the master remote trigger, I was still able to have a good trip albeit the not so ideal photographs taken. Nevertheless, it was a fruitful trip with 2 first-time-encountered beetles found.

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