Some of the goings on in my fuchsia bush


Link Posted 19/06/2020 - 22:36
I think this year there might be another ladybird invasion. I say that because their larvae are crawling over everywhere
and everything - including one of my fuchsia bushes. A problem the larvae have is that when the time comes upon them
they just have to stop, right where they are, and they become pupae within an hour or so. No searching for a safe spot.

Because they can end up quite exposed they have evolved defenses, such as a ring of sharp spikes at the rear end
where they are anchored to the leaf/ stem/ doorframe or wherever - they can get the call to pupate anywhere!

Also, if anything touches the front end, they rear up to display a huge face with what looks like wide open jaws to
frighten off would-be aggressors. I couldn't get round the other side so you will have to imagine it !

Unfortunately for some of them it doesn't work against their fellow larvae who bump into them. When the pupa
rears up, the mobile larva goes straight for its exposed underside - Yes the little perishers are cannibals !

Other things are using the bush too. I can only guess that this, and other similar cocoons are protecting moth
caterpillars. They certainly make a good job of their cocoons.

And just as well because there are marauding bugs crawling about, hunting for their next meal. I haven't a
clue what these are, except that their wings have atrophied due to their apparent lifestyles.

This one just didn't give up either tearing at the threads or trying to penetrate the cocoon with that sharp
looking proboscis. It also tried to drive the other one away, without much success.

It kept returning no matter how violent the other one was. They were still trying when I left the scene.

Taken on location in the bush with a K1, 10cm of tubes, a focusing helicoid and a Schneider Kreuznach
105mm Radionar lens from the 1940s set at around f8. (came off an old Balda I think but it makes a great macro lens).
Both the *istDS and the K5 are incurably addicted to old glass

My page on Photocrowd - link


Link Posted 19/06/2020 - 23:02
Lovely colours. You have a whole ecosystem going on there

My Flickr page


Link Posted 20/06/2020 - 07:49
Very informative, thanks for taking the trouble to explain the biology it is absolutely fascinating. Great photos too!


Link Posted 20/06/2020 - 08:34
Exceptional work! Iíve seen a couple of those larvae out and about but didnít know who they belonged to!
Keep it up.


Link Posted 20/06/2020 - 08:41
Top shots, full of vivid colour and detail.

Best regards
Плутон идет


Link Posted 20/06/2020 - 11:46
Super photos and narrative - is one of your aliases Stephen King by any chance


Link Posted 21/06/2020 - 12:09
Really good macro images.


Link Posted 22/06/2020 - 01:47
Thank you all for your support. I simply love nature and its workings and macro photography helps to share it.
Both the *istDS and the K5 are incurably addicted to old glass

My page on Photocrowd - link
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