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Eric Dresser Wildlife Photography

Wildlife Photography
Know Your Subject

Take Only Photos
Leave Only Tracks



Photographing Insects & Butterflies

For those interested in photographing insects such as butterflies, dragonflies, spiders, etc. ; "early mornings" are the best. At this time, insects will be inactive and easy to approach because they are still chilled from the previous night's air. Breeze creates a major problem when photographing small subjects at a close distance. Take advantage of the fact that early mornings are often calm. You may wish to wear tall rubber boots or even rain pants, since you will probably be walking through dew covered grass. As the morning progresses and the air warms you will start seeing many more subjects. They will be harder to approach, but with patience and persistence, you will be able to get some great shots. I have often times chased a single butterfly for over an hour before it finally allowed a close encounter. An example of this is the Painted Lady in my butterfly gallery. My favorite areas for photographing insects include tall grass along ponds, streams, abandoned fields, and roadsides; (especially where wildflowers are present). Moving slowly and stopping to kneel down will reveal a new and minute world. Once a subject has been located, I choose a macro lens in the 100 to 200mm range so that I have enough working distance. This extra working distance will prevent the disturbance of any surrounding vegetation which could dislodge the subject from its resting spot. Macro lenses with a longer focal length will also help to throw the background out of focus and make your photos much more pleasing. An extension tube can be used for focusing closer when necessary. These hollow tubes are placed between the camera body and lens and they allow any lens to focus closer. However, when these tubes are used the amount of light entering your camera will decrease. Another great accessory is Canon's 500D. It is a close-up lens, (looks just like a filter), that I screw on to the front of my 300mm Nikkor. This setup yields one to one ratio with no loss of light.

More Photography Tips Below:

Getting Started / Blinds / Getting Published / Finding Wildlife / Bird Tips / Birds in Flight
Duck Tips / Insect Tips / Mammal Tips / Deer Tips / My Equipment / Used Equipment


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All photos and content Copyright Eric C. Dresser / Eric Dresser Wildlife Photography.

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