Giant Water Bug

Belostoma sp. water bug, Illinois

I’m so used to taking photos of fast-moving ants and beetles that a sedentary insect comes as something of a relief.  Instead, the challenge with this Belostoma giant water bug was lighting the shot.

Aquariums are prone to reflections and dust on the glass.  I arranged a diffused flash above the tank, positioned behind the glass so as not to leave a reflection by illuminating the camera.

Photo details: Canon 100mm f2.8 macro lens on a Canon EOS 50D
ISO 100, f/8.0, 1/200 sec, diffused overhead flash

9 thoughts on “Giant Water Bug”

    1. I dunno for how long, though. I’m running dangerously low on both beetle photos and the time to go out and photograph new ones. At this rate I might have to resort to linking to Ted MacRae every Friday instead…

      1. 🙂

        Did you hand hold the flash heads above the water? Also, you’ve mentioned your tissue diffuser setup doesn’t work with the 100mm, so how did you diffuse the flash?

        I just think these are really awesome shots!

    1. Oddly enough, the larger the insect the harder it is for me to photograph it well. The sets start becoming simply enormous- perhaps a whole foot or more across(!)- and that’s a lot of extra prep work compared to the miniature sets needed for tiny subjects. So Belostoma is easier than Lethocerus.

      I do have this shot of a Lethocerus out of water. It’s not doing anything terribly exciting, though. Someday I’ll get one of those dramatic predation shots where it’s eating a toddler. Or something.

  1. Fantastic, as usual. I know you know, but it’s still
    nice to hear it. We are never so harsh as when we judge ourselves.

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