Thursday, November 15, 2012

Airborne parasites

Paying a price for not applying insect repellant..
I normally spray my 100-deet insect repellent on my bug-hunts.
A couple of days ago, I paid the ultimate price when a swarm of hungry mosquitoes had bitten my arms and legs.
Their presence was overwhelming as I swatted a few in a single swipe.

An Aedes mosquito at work
Predator and prey
The Aedes mosquito is responsible for the Dengue fever which is a cause of many deaths in urban areas.
All you need, is transmission via an infected individual to cause an outbreak.
This time round, I was the prey.
I spotted a small mosquito on my arm and started photographing it.
Slowly, it began to fill up its belly with my blood.
Mosquitoes are expert in withdrawing its victim's bodily fluid without causing any pain.
I can see clearly on my viewfinder, the proboscis being injected into my skin.
With a contracting movement, blood started to fill its belly.

A large male mosquito
 Beyond normal magnification..
The mosquito is a small bug.
It measures no more than 5mm in length.
To get the best of it, you have to shoot the bug at 3x magnification.
Flash Exposure Control is set at +1 EV to increase the bombardment of the twin lights on my Canon MT24EX flash.
The hardest thing to do, is to get a steady shot handheld.
With my eyes peeled on the bug, I squeezed the shutter button when it came in focus. The rest was post-processing on my Adobe Lightroom 4 software.

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