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Saturday, April 03, 2010

Spotted Wing Fruit Fly (Drosophila suzukii) Version 2

I recently purchased a new laser trigger system to use in high-speed photography – it is considerably more advanced than the old laser system I was using. 

When the asian fruit flies (from yesterday's post) were delivered to my home studio, I had just a few hours to get a number of technically challenging photographs including high-speed shots of the flies in flight. I have been doing this for years, but setting up this system is not easy, and I can spend five hours or more just getting everything calibrated and running.

Adding to this particular challenge is the scale of a fruit fly. They are little specks when viewed with the naked eye. And they are incredibly fast. As one moves down in scale, the technical challenged of focus, speed, and trigger response become acute. 

The StopShot laser system, built by Paul DeZeeuw made several of my technical challenges much easier to deal with, and I was able to nail some high-speed shots of the fruit flies in action. I was up till 2AM getting the shots, but I made the deadline.

Spotted wing fruit fly (Drosophila suzukii)
A female spotted wing fruit fly (Drosophila suzukii) approaching a fresh strawberry

Drosophila suzukii approaching a strawberry
A male spotted wing fruit fly (Drosophila suzukii) approaching a fresh strawberry.

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Details About Me

Portland, Oregon, United States
Husband, Father, Student Of Natural History, Photographer