Hummingbird Hawkmoth

Firstly, a HUUUUUUUUUUGE SORRY for the lack of content lately. I have been very busy with my commercial side of photography that I’ve had little to no time at all for any wildlife and nature photography. Very sad, but of course, I’ve had to follow the work that puts food on the table and with the current state of the planet it makes it even more important.

However, with my monthly article for the Algarve Resident now due, I decided to take some snaps of the many Hummingbird Hawk-moths that visit the garden.

These super fast moths are incredibly difficult to capture pin sharp due to the high speed they move. It’s easy to just put the shutter speed on maximum and hope for the best, but to make it even more challenging, I like to have the body sharp but allow for movement in the wings as I feel this tells the story about their incredible speed they flap them at.

Of course, then there is the angle and I’ve learnt over the years to try and predict movement of wildlife and moths are no exception, just much harder. As you can see from the shot below, I certainly nailed both the shutter speed and the prediction of where it was to feed. I have many shots that I’ll share at a different time, but for now here is just one I captured this afternoon.

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📷 Nikon D850, Nikon 80-400mm @ 400mm, f/5.6, ISO400, 1/2000sec

Convolvulus Hawk-Moth

Well after sunset and nearing the end of twilight I noticed some large flying objects moving around in a dimly lit area of the garden. After investigation I realised these were huge moths and feeding like Hummingbird moths but much, much larger.

I grabbed my Nikon D810 (which as usual, was fitted with my 80-400mm) as it has a pop-up flash, focused (eventually as it was very dark) on a flower and waited in hope it would visit it. This is much easier than trying to chase it around a dark garden. I didn’t wait too long until it hovered nearby and extended its huge proboscis to feed on the flower I had focused on.

I snapped the image below before going to identify it (more information below)

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Convolvulus Hawk-Moth
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Morning Dog Walk: Dragonflies, Butterflies and Moths

I take a camera along on my Dog Walks to bring you some of the sightings that I see on my morning walks, these photos are rarely going to be great quality as its hard enough keeping an energetic Dog entertained and get close enough to anything. They also help me identify where species are so that I can plan to return.

The spring rains brought us many flowers, which in turn brought us many flying insects so this morning I pointed the camera at a few.

Around water you can usually find many Dragonflies, here is a male Violet Dropwing Dragonfly, found in Africa, Middle East, the Arabian Peninsula and Southern Europe this is a medium-sized Dragonfly, sex identification is simple as the female is green and brown. The name is taken from the way it lowers its wings when perched.

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Violet Dropwing Dragonfly (Male) - Trithemis annulata
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