Right up in the grill of a clamp-tipped emerald dragonfly. I've been off in the wilds of Adams County doing field work, much of it with the incomparable David Wagner, and I've managed to wrangle scads of interesting images. I'll share some later, when there's more time. The emerald was captured with my new Canon Rebel T3i, which is proving to be an awesome camera.
A black maple, Acer nigrum, with its telltale foliage. Look closely...
That bit of dying maple tissue on the leaf in the previous photo morphs into a spectacular caterpillar upon inspection. It is a checker-fringe prominent, Schizura ipomoeae; an extraordinary mimic of necrotic leaf tissue. Note how the caterpillar essentially assumes the outline of the leaf margin as it eats its way into the leaf. Remarkable; probably far more spectacular than the rather drab moth that this caterpillar will become - if nothing gets it.
I am a lifelong Ohioan who has made a study of natural history since the age of eight or so - longer than I can remember! A fascination with birds has grown into an amazement with all of nature, and an insatiable curiosity to learn more. One of my major ambitions is to get more people interested in nature. The more of us who care, the more likely that our natural world will survive.
Unless specifically noted, all photos used on this blog are by Jim McCormac, and are my copyrighted property. If you are interested in the use of any of these photos, please contact me at jimmccormac35 AT gmail DOT com. I am sometimes fine with loaning photos for educational or non-commercial uses, but please ask! I do not give permission for carte blanche use of photos from the site, so please do not ask.
I've been taking photographs for a few decades, but never became fully interested and engaged in photography until 2003. That's when I got my first digital camera. Since then, photography has become a passion and a steadily growing addiction. If you delve back far enough into this blog, you will see photos that were made with a variety of Panasonic point & shoot bridge cameras. Then came a Canon Rebel DSLR, followed by a Nikon D7000. I've since returned to Canon, and use their gear almost exclusively. My camera body is a Canon 5D Mark III, which is an awesome full-frame sensor camera. The lens bag includes the following Canon lenses: 100mm f/2.8L-macro; the sensational but bizarre MP-E 65 mega-macro; a 17-40mm f/4L wide-angle; and a 500mm f/4L II, sometimes used with a 1.4 extender (which makes it a 700mm). I've also got a Tamron 70-200mm (great lens!). I do lots of macro, and my typical flash gear is the Canon Twin-Lite setup. If the gear needs three-legged stabilization, it is mounted on a Manfrotto tripod, attached to an Induro Gimbal head. Finally, I've got a GoPro Hero, which is fully waterproof and can be used for underwater work. Sometimes I even use the camera or video feature on my iPhone 5S smartphone - it's amazing how good phone cameras have become.
Speaking and Guiding Gigs 2015
January 17, 2015 - Ohio Ornithological Society winter field trip to the Wilds, Muskingum County, Ohio. Field trip leader.
February 5, 2015 - Ohio Sea Grant meeting. Lake Erie Birding Trail talk. Longaberger House, Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio.
February 8, 2015 - Aullwood Audubon Center. Lake Erie Birding Trail talk. Dayton, Ohio.
February 21, 2015 - Indianapolis Museum of Art. Horticulture Symposium: The Living Landscape. Talk on birds in the urban landscape. Indianapolis, Indiana.
February 28, 2015 - Tree & Shrub Workshop, sponsored by the Midwest Native Plant Society. Ohio's Botanical Workhorses: Trees & Shrubs. Caesar Creek Lake Corps of Engineers Visitor Center, Waynesville, Ohio.
March 11, 2015 - Ohio Wildlife Diversity Conference. Amazing Lichens. Aladdin Shrine Center, Columbus, Ohio.
March 14, 2015 - GardenWise Conference. Milkweeds, Moths, Monarchs, and more. York, Pennsylvania.
March 21, 2015 - Shreve Migration Sensation. Fabulous Wetlands of Wayne County. Shreve, Ohio.
March 25, 2015 - Wheaton Club annual banquet. Ohio's Amazing Natural History. Upper Arlington, Ohio.
March 27, 2015 - Ohio Botanical Symposium. A Splendid Blizzard of Biodiversity: Goldenrods. Villa Milano Conference Center, Columbus, Ohio.
April 18, 2015 - Ohio Chapter of The Nature Conservancy, Wildflower/Nature Hike at Agnes Andreae Preserve on Little Darby Creek. Madison County, Ohio.
April 25-26, 2015 - Ohio Ornithological Society annual conference. Photography lecture, lead fields trips. Shawnee State Park, Scioto County, Ohio.
April 27 - May 2, 2015 - New River Birding & Nature Festival. Speak and leads field trips. Fayetteville, West Virginia.
May 24 - 28, 2015. NettieBay Lodge in northern Michigan. Lead field trips to some of the greatest habitats in the Great Lakes region. Hawks, Michigan.
June 12 - 14, 2015 - Mothapalooza, a quite different and ultra-cool natural history event. Lead field trips. Shawnee State Park Lodge, Scioto County, Ohio.
July 11, 2015 - Seneca County Master Gardeners. Butterflies, and Moths, their Darker Side. Tiffin-Seneca County Public Library, Tiffin, Ohio.
July 24 - 26, 2015 - Midwest Native Plant Conference. Speak and lead field trips. Dayton, Ohio.
August 13, 2015 - Four Seasons Garden Club. Butterfly Talk. McArthur, Ohio.
September 2, 2015 - Goldenrod field trip (and LOTS of other cool stuff), with Division of Natural Areas botanist Rick Gardner. Select hotspots in west-central Ohio.
September 4 - 6, 2015. Caterpillar mini-conference. Lead field trips through the wilds of southern Ohio in search of caterpillars. This'll be a doozy. Eulett Center, Edge of Appalachia Preserve, West Union, Ohio.
September 11 - 13, 2015. Midwest Birding Symposium. Talk on warblers, lead field trips. Bay City, Michigan.
October 2, 2015. Indiana Audubon Fall Festival. Indianapolis, Indiana.
November 14, 2015 - Indiana Native Plant and Wildflower Society annual conference. Speaking, topic to be decided. Indianapolis, Indiana.
More to come!
Birds of Ohio
Lots of info about our avifauna
Great Lakes Nature Guide
A primer of the earth's greatest freshwater resource.
Wild Ohio: The Best of our Natural Heritage
Pictorial essays of Ohio's best remaining natural lands