For the identification of insects and other fauna and flora of South Africa: please click on the following links:
Insects and related species: Antlions - Ants - Bees - Beetles - Bugs - Butterflies, Moths and Caterpillars - Centipedes and Millipedes - Cockroaches - Crickets - Dragonflies and Damselflies - Grasshoppers and Katydids - Mantis - Stick Insects - Ticks and Mites - Wasps - Woodlice
Plants, Trees, Flowers: (Note: Unless plants fall into a specific species such as Cacti, they have been classified by their flower colour to make them easier to find) Bonsai - Cacti, Succulents, Aloes, Euplorbia - Ferns and Cycads - Flowers - Fungi, Lichen and Moss - Grass - Trees
Animals, Birds, Reptiles etc.: Animals, Birds, Fish and Crabs - Frogs - Lizards - Scorpions - Snails and Slugs - Snakes - Spiders - Tortoise, Turtles and Terrapins - Whipscorpions
Other photography: Aeroplanes - Cars and Bikes - Travel - Sunrise - Water drops/falls - Sudwala and Sterkfontein Caves etc.

Videos: YouTube

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Midges

With all the rain we have been having, water has been collecting in a huge white plastic drum in the yard and needless to say, insects find their way to it to breed.
These Midges (Family Chironomidae) are very small, about 3mm or he size of a pencil point, in length. The Larvae which you can see in the top photograph are maybe half an inch in length. In the one below, it shows some of their development stages they go through.
Larvae feed on decaying organic matter and they occur in almost any pool of water.
The males have very long, fan-like antennae and have blue-ish wings. They have poorly developed mouthparts and the adults of some of the species do not feed at all.
They are sometimes easily confused with mosquitoes and may form huge swarms when mating.

26 comments:

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

Brilliant pictures as always. I hate midges, but the ones I hated most were when we were cycling in Scotland - they bite like mad and it looked like I had a bad dose of the measles!

Jochen said...

Whoa, these are some amazing close-ups!

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Diane. They are pesky little things!! That sure was a bad cawe of them biting you. I am so lucky that things never seem to do that to me with all the time I spend in the veld. Seems like I am not sweet enough. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Jochen. Somehow the pictures seem a bit dark on the screen? Well, just as long as you can make out what they are. :)

troutbirder said...

Wondeful. Technically speaking these midges are about hook size 22. That is about the smallest that I can see to tie on my tapered fly line. However, the white drums are probably too small to contain any trout. Therefore I will have to look elsewhere in the area for proper habitat. Thanks for sharing.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

LOL!! You would have to tie about 50 on to get a respectable meal for your trout TB. Sorry I cannot find some bigger ones for you but I will keep on looking. :)

This Is My Blog - fishing guy said...

Joan: Neat photos of the little critters.

Mary said...

Ick...anything that can be confused with mosquitoes is not my sort of bug. Your photos are great...I just don't like bugs like this.

Gaelyn said...

So what happened to the fish in the tub? They should be eating some larve. Glad it's not mosquitos breading there.
You got some great closeups of the midges, enough to clearly see they Are Not squits.

esoxfever said...

Great pictures!!!

You have some amazing stuff in this blog.

Congratulations.

Craver Vii said...

If you had sound in this, maybe we could hear a chorus of midges singing "Ding-dong the Witch is Dead."

Oh, that was so bad.

A human kind of human said...

What? They are not mosquitoes! (smile)

tony said...

An amazing fete of photography Joan.
well done or shall we say taken.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Tom. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Mary. Yip, I can understand how you feel Mary. Summer is the time when you need to have some kind of screen on doors and windows.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Apparently one of the fish died Gaelyn and they do not know what happened to the other one, probably got eaten by some bird. :) Poor thing. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks esoxfever. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Yes, that was terrible Craver!! LOL!! You are lucky I think of you as a friends or else I would have to ban you!! LOL!!

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

LOL!! There is one way to tell they are not mosquitoes Anne, they walk and mossies don't. :)

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Tony. When a subject is so small it is a problem getting good pics of it.

Andrea said...

Beautiful pictures.
And it's interesting to read your words.
Did you change lenses?
In the last three pictures I see a very strong definition.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Andrea. Yes I did the first two were taken with the P&S as I could not reach down far enough with the Canon to see what I was shooting but the midge's were on the plant next to the container so I could use my macro lens.

JM said...

Fantastic sequence, Joan! Well done!

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Thanks Jose. Luck was on my side again. :)

Jo said...

Hi Joan;) I've gotten to know you a little through John and Deb who met you and also with your friendship with Gaelyn (was she jealous of that scrumptious choc cake? I was!) I have added myself as a follower and will be back often. Thanks for visiting my blog while I was "absent" - travelling our beautiful country.

SAPhotographs (Joan) said...

Hi Jo. Nice to hear from you. I loved meeting your son and his family, as a matter of fact I am in the process of scheduling a blog of the area right now.

I am sure you enjoyed your travels with hubby on the motorbike, what a lovely way to go. It must be sad to be so far away from the grandkids again though.