Juvenile Pacific Tree Frog (Pseudacris regilla)

A juvenile Pacific Tree Frog (Pseudacris regilla) resting on a Rose bush leaf.

juvenile pacific tree frog pseudacris regilla on a leaf

Juvenile Pacific Tree Frog (Pseudacris regilla) (Purchase)

I was in the garden yesterday and noticed this small Pacific Tree Frog (Pseudacris regilla) resting on a leaf in a rose bush. The backyard pond still has some tadpoles in it, but clearly a lot of them have transitioned into juvenile frogs as I see them in the vegetable garden and on the edges of the lawn quite frequently. When I first spotted this one it was balled up and quite compact while sitting on a leaf. I made one photograph of it there, and then went to photograph a flower elsewhere in the garden before changing to a macro lens. When I came back the juvenile tree frog had jumped to another leaf and was in much more photogenic position. The tree frog did not seem perturbed by the potential intrusion of my camera lens looming nearby. It soon started to crouch down a bit as seen in this second photograph below before resuming the really compact resting position.

Pacific Tree Frogs are native here in British Columbia and their range extends from Northern California through to southern Alaska. The adults are typically terrestrial, living under leaves, logs, and other cool, sheltered places. They return to ponds for mating and spawning, with the eggs hatching tadpoles in a few weeks. The tadpoles eat a variety of foods while in the pond including scraping algae off of plants and consuming pollen from the surface of the water. After 2-3 months as tadpoles they transform into fully formed (albeit small) frogs and move mostly onto land. Their adult diet consists of mostly of insects, arachnids, and small arthropods.

juvenile pacific tree frog pseudacris regilla on a rose leaf

Juvenile Pacific Tree Frog (Pseudacris regilla) on a Rose Leaf (Purchase)

This juvenile Pacific Tree frog was about 2.5cm (1 inch) long while the largest adults are near 5cm (2 inches) – so the ones I’ve been seeing have a lot of growing left to do! Most of the small tree frogs I see in the backyard are brown or grey/tan like this one, but they can also be green, and sometimes almost black in color.

You can see more of my wildlife and animal photos (including frogs) in my Animals & Wildlife Gallery.

Cucumber Tendrils in the Greenhouse

cucumber tendril in a greenhouse in the fraser valley of british columbia

Cucumber tendrils in a Greenhouse in the Fraser Valley of British Columbia

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   A bit of an older image (photographed in 2011) but I found a lot of photography opportunities with my Canon 100mm macro lens and these cucumber tendrils in a backyard greenhouse. I photographed the leaves and the flowers from a few angles but settled on these curled tendrils as the most interesting aspect of these plants.

   More of my macro photography can be found in the Macro Photos Gallery.

Blueberries (Vaccinium corymbosum)

Organic Blueberries (Vaccinium corymbosum) in the Fraser Valley of British Columbia

blueberries

Ripe Highbush Blueberries (Vaccinium corymbosum) in the Fraser Valley of BC

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   These are some Highbush Blueberries (Vaccinium corymbosum) I photographed back in August of 2011. I didn’t get the final editing done until now – but I wish I had processed these when I could actually eat some. Viewing these gave me a craving for some fresh Blueberries! Unfortunate that I will have to wait until around August before I can have some fresh ones again!

   A few more photos of these can be found in my image archive.

Focus Stacking ‐ Spring Crocus Flowers

a crocus flower - crocus vernus - emerges from the ground in one of the first signs of spring

Crocus vernus
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   A closeup of two Crocus (Crocus vernus) flowers in the backyard last Spring.

   This photograph was a bit of an experiment. I wanted to have a shallow depth of field that would blur the background. Since these flowers were at different heights, having them both in focus was not going to occur along with a shallow depth of field. I might have been able to get these both in focus with an aperture of f/16 or higher, but this would not have the background bokeh effect I was looking for. So this is a blend of two exposures shot at f/2.8 each focusing on the top of one of the flowers. The two exposures were then merged in Photoshop. I like the effect this created, and it shows that a “focus stack” doesn’t have to have everything in focus through the composition.

   More photos of Spring flowers and gardens can be found in my Garden Photos Gallery.

Raindrops on a Leaf – Macro from the Garden

a snowy owl - bubo scandiacus - hops to a different piece of driftwood at boundary bay - british columbia - canada

Lady’s Mantle (Alchemilla) Raindrops

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   I haven’t shot any macro since last Fall so during a break in the rain I made this photo a few days ago. “Lady’s Mantle” (Alchemilla) leaves have lots of little hairs on them which always seem to collect such great water droplets. Made with my trusty Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 macro lens.

Honeybee (Apis mellifera) Macro

honeybee apis mellifera foraging on a buddleja flower
Nectar Gathering
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   One of the things I love most about macro photography is how a small area of the backyard can suddenly yield almost infinite possibilities with a macro lens. One of my favourite macro subject are bees – and while I have shot a lot of these it can be rather hit and miss. You need a decent shutter speed as these and other insects don’t seem to sit still long while on a flower. To do this I shot at a higher ISO than usual (800 in this case), and at a wide aperture (f/6.3 for a little more DOF than f/2.8) so I could have a high shutter speed. I was also doing this hand held with a 100mm lens with no stabilization, so a shutter speed of 1/100sec would have not turned out well with just the camera shake from my hands (that 1/focal length rule). These guys dart around so much that using a tripod would drive one mad so these settings are important.

   Even with settings like this there is still a lot of trial and error. So I take a lot of shots. This further illustrated to me my need to upgrade from my 2Gb CF cards – they were okay for my 30D but the 7D in RAW mode results in 22-25 megabytes for each photo. Once you start taking something other than landscapes having only 70 exposures available before switching cards is limiting.

Woodland Skipper (Ochlodes sylvanoides)

woodland skipper ochlodes sylvanoides sipping nectar from a lavender flower
Woodland Skipper
(Ochlodes sylvanoides)
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  A few years ago I made it my quest to pursue the “perfect” bee on a flower shot. I took hundreds of photos – but my technique and understanding was not (apparently) very good. I wound up with a few keepers but nothing that really made me feel like I nailed it. Having to go through all of those shots burned me out on the idea and while I have shot the occasional bee since, I’ve generally avoided trying again.

  I have a much better understanding of how to shoot this sort of thing now, and inspired by this post by Robin Black, I decided to try again. The lavender flowers in the backyard are somewhat past their prime, but the insects are still all over them collecting nectar. I found this Woodland Skipper (Ochlodes sylvanoides) to be a more interesting subject than the plain honeybees, though the Skippers seem to be a lot more manic in their movements. I am quite happy with this shot, but is it the “perfect” Skipper photo? Not yet!

Mycena Mushroom in Campbell Valley Park

mycena species mushroom in campbell valley park
Mushroom (Mycena sp.)
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   A few months ago I walked through Campbell Valley Park with only my macro lens on my camera. The point of this exercise was that I wanted to focus on just type of shot and not get distracted by other sorts of shots. I wanted to concentrate on the small things like this mushroom, or another subject from that day – a Bleeding Heart flower.

   Unfortunately I am not adept at identification of fungi, so I’ll get as close as possible and merely identify this as some sort of Mycena sp.
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