View Full Version : Emergence of a Common darter dragonfly

Jonathan Ashton
08-14-2019, 09:59 AM
These are stacked images each I think a stack of 10 performed in camera. I think in total I took over 1000 exposures, taken over a period of approximately 1.5hr. The lighting conditions varied and some stacks had to be repeated due to an occasional breeze. The angle from which the images were taken were similar in 1st and 2nd images but different in 3rd because the imago had re-positioned a little more than between 1st and 2nd.


Image input equipment model : E-M1X
LensModel : OLYMPUS M.60mm F2.8 Macro
Lens focal length : 60 mm
Focal length in 35 mm film : 120.0mm
Exposure mode : Manual exposure
Photographic Sensitivity : 500
Exposure bias : 0 EV (some -0.3)
Exposure time : 1/320 sec (some 1/200 sec)
F number : F8 (some f11)
Flash : OFF

Gabriela Plesea
08-15-2019, 02:06 PM
Wow, Jon! You took my breath away with those images, just awesome :cheers: Super sharp with beautiful detail, wonderful colours. 1000 exposures...whew!

Would like to try and capture a cicada emerging from its shell - I think it is called an exoskeleton? Might need a few tips from you, shall get in touch when back from Kruger Park, if that's ok.

Really enjoyed this sequence, thank you so much for sharing. Love those those eyes of the dragon fly, and every little detail. Background is superb. Stunning work!!!

Warmest regards,

Jonathan Ashton
08-15-2019, 02:31 PM
Glad you like d them Gabriela. Exoskeleton is the term given to the "skeleton" of many (adult) insects in the dragon fly we go egg-> larva -> imago. When the larva leaves the water it climbs up some dry stem of sorts. It then gets a stable position and gets a firm grip, the shell of the larva dries out and splits, this shell is referred to as the exuvia. The adult dragonfly forces it's way out once the shell has dried and of course once the metamorphosis is complete. It takes some time for the adult to pump out its wings and more time again for the full adult colours to develop.

have fun in Kruger I look forward to seeing your images.... glad to be of any help I can be.

Gabriela Plesea
08-16-2019, 01:07 PM
Thank you so much Jon, it's all so interesting! Every now and then I find such a dried out shell on a tree trunk in the garden, always wondering what insect came out of there. Managed to identify the one which belongs to the Cicada but not sure exactly which species, there are about 150 of them in South Africa.

I am off to Johannesburg on a business trip next week, then early September going camping in the Kruger - hope to bring back some images to share. I do have an old Macro lens... so when back I am going to chat to Uncle Nikon and see what's available, Christmas is around the corner:bg3:

Krishna Prasad kotti
11-06-2019, 02:07 PM
Very Nice Sequence...

Alison McCoy
12-23-2019, 04:51 PM
Beautiful sequence. I enjoyed seeing how intact the shell was after the dragon fly emerged from it. Very sharp images and lovely colors and bg.