Arboretum and UV photography

For the past two days, I attended the annual Ottawa-Carleton Institute of Biology (OCIB) Symposium at Carleton University.  Yesterday, I went for a walk at the Arboretum after lunch.

Mourning Cloak visiting willow flowers.

Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula)
It was hot and sunny during that time, so I didn't see much wildlife.  I did see this Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula).


Common Grackle (Quiscalus quiscula)
Beautiful bird.

Greater Bee Fly (Bombylius major) visiting Siberian squill
Greater Bee Fly (Bombylius major) visiting Siberian squill.

A Brown-belted bumble bee (Bombus griseocollis) visiting the squill.

Another Mourning Cloak.

Wood Ducks with Canada Geese.


Rideau River flowing through Carleton University
View of the Rideau River today from the O-Train.

Now, the reason why I have a (borrowed) Nikon D70S is that this field season, I plan to determine if my study species (Mertensia fusiformis and M. brevistyla) have different floral UV patterns.  I have been acquiring different equipments that enables me to photograph in the UV spectrum, including the borrowed Nikon D70S, a lens suitable for UV photography (i.e., EL-NIKKOR 75mm f/4 enlarger lens), something to attach the enlarger lens to the camera body (a helicoid extension tube, a 39 to 42 adapter ring, and a T-Mount Nikon adapter), a filter that allows the transmission of UV light (i.e., Badder U filter), and a 40.5 to 48 step-up adapter ring (to attach the filter to the lens).  I gathered most of the information I needed from online sources (such as: 1, 2, and 3), but I have also asked for help from a Carleton graduate student studying ultraviolet patterns on insects.  I visited her this afternoon to get some pointers on how to take UV photographs before my field season.

UV photo of UV-absorbing sunscreen dabbed on a white paper.

Dandelion in visible light.

Dandelion in UV light. As you can see, the petals are UV bright and the center is UV dark.  It's going to be a fun summer seeing wildflowers in the UV spectrum.

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