Moose Hill vernal pool   Leave a comment

I don’t think I’m a big gadget guy, but I recently bought the rather extraordinary Laowa 24 mm probe lens.  This macro lens also happens to be waterproof, and allows me to sit on the edge of a vernal pond, dip the end of the probe into the water, and record what I see.

The single vernal pool had already dried up and split into multiple pools.  For some reason, one of them was utterly packed with Fairy Shrimp, while the other didn’t seem to have any.  It may be relevant that the one that *didn’t* have fairy shrimp, had plenty of frogs!

This photo gives you a good idea of how closely the fairy shrimp were packed:

Some more photos of their unearthly beauty:

Not a very good photo of a beautiful spider, Pirata in Lycosidae (wolf spiders), walking on water:

A friend has a copy of TopazAI denoise software, which uses AI to deblur. This is the output, so much better! Note that the foreground is improved without the background getting worse.

Bright red water mites (Hydrachnidia) were everywhere:

Look at the feathery legs!

According to BugGuide: “I think this is most likely Helochares maculicollis, but the angle isn’t great, so Hydrobius fuscipes and Cymbiodyta bifidus are possibilities”

Probably a water beetle larvae, probably Dytiscidae.

Phantom midge larva, I think, but I don’t have the expertise to rule out mosquito larva.

I have no idea what’s going on with this fly. Is it two flies mating? Doesn’t seem so from other angles. (EDIT: Ochthera tuberculata, in Ephydridae).

Mayfly larva?

Is this a Copepod?

I think this is an Ostracod:

Another Ostracod, I think:

The 24mm lens allows us to get into the creature’s world, rather than just photograph them. I think this is a wood frog, Lithobates sylvaticus:

Ice and leaf. The ice will melt, the leaf is dead, but they’re going out so elegantly, and the new will begin again soon.

Posted 2021-03-20 by gaurav1729 in Uncategorized

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