Category Archives: Wildlife

“Wood Nymph”

“Wood Nymph”

“Sometimes you just had to crawl through the dark before
you could see the light.” 
― E.L. Montes

Butterflies can be a challenge to photograph. They are quite shy and their irregular flight makes them tough to track. But, it’s that irregular movement that makes me notice them.

This wood nymph first appeared in my peripheral vision and floated around me for some time before finally landing, far away from me and in the darker recesses of forest along the trail.

Over time, I got closer, and it flew away, always staying out of range for me. After some time of pursuing it, the butterfly finally landed close enough for me to approach it, slowly, with my macro lens. I was more concerned with capturing an image than fiddling with aperture settings, so depth of field is a tad shallow for my liking. Nonetheless, I was able to get a decent image of it, as it sat near its dark retreat, staring at me. As soon as I snapped the shot, it was off again.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm
1/200 sec, f/7.1, ISO 100

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

Advertisements

“That Icy Stare”

“That Icy Stare”

“I hate and fear snakes, because if you look into the eyes of any snake you will see that it knows all and more of the mystery of man’s fall, and that it feels all the contempt that the Devil felt when Adam was evicted from Eden. 
― Rudyard Kipling

Unlike Kipling, I have a strange yet respectful fascination with the snakes I encounter on my many hikes. None of the snakes in my area are poisonous, though they will bite when bothered. There is something about the eyes of a snake. They are so focussed, unblinking, and cold. Truly a predator

This particular snake, found on the trail at Secord Forest, where I hike quite frequently, is a common Garter Snake and was on the path sunning itself when I heard it move as I crested a ridge and the snake remained on the path as I approached, affording me a great opportunity to make a few photos.

For this particular image I had to lay down on the ground and get quite close. I expect the movement made the snake rear up for a look, which made for this lovely shot. It took a few attempts to get the tongue flitting out, but was worth the wait.

It’s hard to believe, but just last week I encountered two Garter Snakes basking in the sun right next to ice patches, which are now merely a memory, but they slipped off before I could get a good shot.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mmm

1/160 sec, f/8.0, ISO 500 

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“The Final Stretch”

“The Final Stretch”

“Are you tired? Are you feeling that you will not be able to reach your destination? Then all you have to remember is that those who reached their far and hard destinations also felt the same way on their way! Knowing what others felt will give you a great power to complete your journey!” 
― Mehmet Murat ildan

I was looking for a suitable quote for this image and Mehmet always seems to have something that resonates with me.

The journey of the countless rainbow trout up Duffins Creek every April fascinates me. Since I saw salmon spawning in BC, these mass migrations have been a thing of wonder. The distance the fish travel, through almost insurmountable obstacles; strong currents, shallow water, and tangles of fallen tree limbs, to name only a few.

Yet, they persevere and most make it to the destination. In this case, a large dam that separtarates the introduced rainbow trout from the native brown trout. It’s at this dam that I witness the greatest ‘stretches’ as the trout leap high in the air, hoping to conquer the dam, to no avail. It’s their final stretch, literally, as they extend their brightly coloured bodies through the air. Once they figure they can’t go any further upstream, they spawn in a deep pool at the base of the dam, and make the return journey to Lake Ontario, this time, with the current to their favour.

In case you are wondering, I sat on a rock near the base of the dam for about an hour, waiting for just the right moment, and testing my reflexes, to make several images and settling on this one, which nicely shows the colour of the trout as the sunlight shines on its outstretched body. Also an act of perseverance.

If you like this image, I made another one similar to it, 3 years go, in the same location.

https://edlehming.wordpress.com/2015/04/17/rainbow-trout-jump-whitevale-dam-pickering-ontario/

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 200mm
1/2000 sec, f/5.0 ISO 250

For more images like this, please visit my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

“The Return”

“The Return”

“Home is where you go to find solace from the ever changing chaos, to find love within the confines of a heartless world, and to be reminded that no matter how far you wander, there will always be something waiting when you return.” 
― Kendal Rob

“The Return”

The return of migratory birds and the return of spring. Two things that go together nicely. Here we stand, on the cusp of spring, recent snows blanketing the ground in a final reminder of the season, now passing.

Birdsong, fills the air, between the sound of trees groaning in the north wind, its bite now feeling less severe, sun shining into the depths of the forest, lighting the dark recesses.

I love this time of year, the warming light and the lengthening days. In mere weeks, new growth with erupt from the ground, as the sun thaws the now frozen ground. Soon, life in abundance will return to the forest.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD @ 170mm
1/400 sec, f/10.0 ISO 250

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/EdLehming
or my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

 

“Golden Moments”

“Golden Moments”

“Do you know how there are moments when the world moves so slowly you can feel your bones shifting, your mind tumbling? When you think that no matter what happens to you for the rest of your life, you will remember every last detail of that one minute forever?” 
― Jodi Picoult

While on an extended hike yesterday, making photos for my next series, I entered a large meadow, filled with bright yellow Goldenrod. The plants were in peak condition, having just started blooming a few days ago. The entire field in which I stood, from treeline to treeline, was alight with gold. As I stood looking across the expanse of flowers, my ears became aware of an incredible buzzing sound. Upon looking closer, I noticed thousands of honeybees at work, extracting nectar and collecting pollen. I was literally engulfed in a sea of flowers and bees. Wow!

For a few moments, I stood there, eyes closed, the sun shining warmly on my face, savouring the moment, thrilling in the warmth and listening to the thrum of the bees. Everything else melted into the background as my senses drank in the sounds of life. I was blessed to be part of this moment, also thinking how awesome it was to see a significant population of honeybees, which have been on the decline for the past few years.

After pausing to enjoy this experience, I set out to make a few images to remember it by. It did not take long, as every flower has at least two bees on it. That is how many there were. As I said in previous posts, I used to have a fear of bees. What I have experienced lately is that honeybees are very gentle and could care less about me as I lean in close for a photo. I also noticed that as I pushed though the bee laden goldenrod, they simply flew into the air and landed back on the plants after I had passed. They bounced off my arms and chest as I waded through the flowers, simply another participant in the life of the meadow. By the way, for those not familiar with goldenrod, it grows on tall stalks and the flowers are at face level to me. I’m six foot one. So, the bees are right in front of me as well.

So, here it is, a “Golden Moment” to remind me of my time with the bees and the joy of that moment, in the flowers.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
1/640 sec, f/13.0, ISO 400 

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/EdLehming
or my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com

 

 

“Lunch for Two”

“Lunch for Two”

“Unfamiliar disturbs us; familiar comforts us! But for the wise man, unusual is more precious than the usual because it offers us a new way, a new vision, a new idea, a new world!” 
― Mehmet Murat ildan

Quite often, I come across scenes that make me pause, because they are unusual or momentary. For me, those scenes are a break from the mundane, everyday scenes, and I relish them. Like this image of two Black Blister Beetles (Epicauta pennsylvanica), feasting on recently blooming Goldenrod. I also had to look the beetles up, since I was not sure what they were. To my surprise, most images of the beetles have them feeding on Goldenrod. So perhaps, this is not so unusual after all?

In my many hours hiking local trails I have not noticed these beetles, which on this particular day seemed to be infesting most of the Goldenrod along the trails. It may have been a unique event for this day, or I may simply have missed seeing it in the past.

What made this scene more interesting to me was that all the beetles; there where more than just these two, were all facing the same direction. It’s just the close proximity of these two that made me come up with the title. I did go back out the next day and the beetles were gone.

Nikon D800
Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di Macro 1:1 (272ENII)@90mm
1/400 sec, f/10.0, ISO 400

For more images like this, please visit my Facebook page:
https://www.facebook.com/EdLehming
or my website (images are available for purchase)
http://www.edlehming.com