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Saturday, 7 July 2012

Glow Worms: Nature's torch

I missed the Olympic torch On Thursday 5th July, as I was working that day and visits to a school also. However, in the evening, at 9.30pm I visited Haddiscoe Bridge, the western side and parked the car and walked the 3/4 mile walk to the station. It wasn't quite dark but I did hear 2 distant reeling Grasshopper Warblers. It was also immediately apparent that the grass verges had recently been cut. Not a good sign. Walking back from the station, at 10.15, I saw the tell tale illuminous bright great light of the final 2 segments of the Glow Worm's body from deep within the cut grass. I then saw a total of 12 excellent Glow Worms all in the cut grass border (both sides with the west side sporting a slightly greater tally of Glow Worms) roughly in the middle of the stretch between Haddiscoe Bridge and station. The tiny luminous green lights (of the last 2 sections of their abdomen) were like over illuminated Christmas lights dumped at random on the ground spaces apart by several metres. After some experimentation, I set the camera to ISO 1600 and either F7.1 or F8 aperture and using the flash managed eventually to get a few decent shots although limiting the amount I photographed on each Glow Worm to minimise disturbance. The only thing I could focus on in the pitch black was the last 2 illuminated sections of the body and then moving the camera slightly up to include the whole of the Glow Worms body. Press the shutter and hold the camera still until the shutter had released to try and prevent inevtable camera shake. A Gorilla pod tripod were be ideal for the type of photography! I'll have to get one! One particularly showy individual climbed to the top of a grass stem and moved around a little.

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