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Maidenstears

Silene vulgaris, also called he bladder campion.

In this flower, a crab spider (Misumena vatia) is hiding. It just caught a bumblebee.

Maidenstears

Sharpshooter Leafhopper

Cuerna striata

A new find in the early days of this year’s macro photography season. A beautiful colourful leafhopper.

 

Sharpshooter Leafhopper

Three-banded Lady Beetle

Coccinella Trifasciata Perplexa

Photographed in Lyn, Ontario.

 

Three-banded Lady Beetle

Flower Long-horned Beetle

Gaurotes cyanipennis

First time I ever encountered this beautiful beetle. Apparently they are either metallic green or metallic purple. I sure hope to find the  purple variety in the near future.

I found and photographed this beetle on the shore of the St. Lawrence River in Lockport, Ontario.

Flower Long-horned Beetle

Clay-colored Leaf Beetle

Anomoea laticlavia

Another new find in 2017. Photographed in Lyn, Ontario.

Clay-colored Leaf Beetle

Agrilus planipennis

A jewel beetle also known as the emerald ash borer. This insect is native to Asia but was introduced in the USA and Canada where it is considered a pest. The beetle is highly destructive to ash trees. More information about this invasive species can be found here: http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/forests/fire-insects-disturbances/top-insects/13395

Agrilus planipennis

Sedge Sprite

Nehalennia irene sitting in the evening sun. Living close by the river means that I get to see (and photograph) lots of beautiful dragonflies as well as damselflies.

Sedge Sprite

Tiger Beetle

In this post you will find two species of Tiger Beetles. I was very pleased to find a mating couple and I thought the female just looked very different from the male Six-spotted Green Tiger Beetle (Cicindela seguitata). After some research I discovered the “female” Tiger Beetle was in facta different species: the Festive Tiger Beetle (Cicindela scutellaris). All photographs were taken in Lyn Valley Conservation Aria in Lyn, Ontario.

 

Tiger Beetle

Giant Swallowtail

I found these four Giant Swallowtails (Papilio cresphontes) during a puddling party. During these sessions, the butterflies suck up fluids and take in extra nutritions such as salts and minerals. It gave me the opportunity to take a closer look as well as some detailed shots.

Giant Swallowtail

Tortoise Beetles

Enclosed gallery shows different species of Tortoise Beetles I found and Photographed in the 1000 Islands region in Ontario, Canada.

Image 1 – 7 Golden Tortoise Beetle, Charidotella sexpunctata, with their iridescent elytra. 

Image 8 & 9 the spotless Tortoise Beetle, Charidotella purpurata

Image 10 & 11, Mottled Tortoise Beetle, Deloyala guttata

Image 12, 13 & 14 Thistle Tortose Beetle, Deloyala guttata with image 13 showing the larval stage.

Tortoise Beetles

Common Asparagus Beetle

The Common Asparagus Beetle (Crioceris asparagi) is approx. 1/4 inch long and has black/blue and cream/yellow markings on the red-bordered elytra. It is slightly smaller compared to the Spotted Asparagus Beetle.  It is originally from Europe, but is now also widespread across the United States and Canada. The Common Asparagus Beetles overwinter as adults and begin feeding immediately after they emerge early spring. Approximately one week later, the first eggs will be laid. Both the adults as the larvae feed on the young asparagus spears and foliage. This can lead to serious damage and growth reduction of the young asparagus plants.

Common Asparagus Beetle

Spotted Asparagus Beetle

Spotted Asparagus Beetles (Crioceris duodecimpunctata), are also called Twelve-Spotted Asparagus Beetles. They are member of the family Leaf Beetles (Chrysomelidae) and widespread in the United States and Canada but were originally native to the Palaearctic Region, which includes Europe, Asia north of the Himalaya, northern Africa, and the northern and central parts of the Arabian Peninsula.

They feed on Asparagus plants only and are sometimes considered a pest. As the larvae feed on the Asparagus berries only and the adults lay their eggs on the ferns, they are much less of a threat than the closely related Common Asparagus Beetle (Crioceris asparagi).

Spotted Asparagus Beetle

Locust Borer

The Locust Borer (Megacyllene robiniae), a species of Longhorn Beetle is native to The United States and Southern Canada. They can be found sitting on Goldenrod in the months August, September October. Adults lay their eggs in Locust trees, where the larvae will start to burrow in spring time. Locust Borers can easily be mistaken for wasps due to their black and yellow pattern. Also they are often confused with the Hickory Borer (Megacyllene caryae) which is more active in springtime.

Locust Borer

Scilla Siberica

These lovely little flowers just started to appear in the backyard. They are  Scilla siberia, also called Siberian squill or wood squill. Although there name would suggest they originate from Siberia, they do not. They are native to Southern Russia, The Caucasus and Turkey.

They spread quickly from seeds under trees and into lawns.

Scilla Siberica

Dicyrtomina ornata

Springtails Dicyrtomina ornata are widespread. It is very easy to find them on the underside of leaves, on branches or dead sticks in your garden, and even on the water surface of a garden pond.

Identification of springtails can be really difficult. Dicyrtomina ornata very much resemble Dicyrtomina saundersi, which are also quite common. The main differences are the shape of the dark patch on the bum which is a solid rectangular with Dicyrtomina ornata and is more barred with Dicyrtomina saundersi. Also sudden color changes of the antenna between the 2nd and 3rd segment are a clue to identify the correct species.

The last shot shows a springtail Dicyrtomina saundersi. As you can see, they resemble Dicyrtomina ornata a lot.

The third shot shows a a little surprise; a springtail Sminthurinus elegans

For comprehensive information about springtails and Collembola identification keys, I like to refer to www.collembola.org.

Dicyrtomina ornata

Sminthurides aquaticus

The common and widely spread springtails (collembola) Sminthurides aquaticus can be found at edges of ponds. These are the white little specks which you can see slowly moving if you take a closer look. They are grazing on rocks or sit on the water surface. They have a ghost-like appearance with their pale yellow bodies. In fact, the light coloured ones are the females only. On enclosed pictures of grazing herds of these springtails, you can see that the female outnumber the males. The males are much smaller, darker yellow and have modified antennas which are suitable for grasping the females in a curious looking courting ritual. A male can be seen in second and third shot of this gallery. I do not yet have a good shot of a mating couple of these Sminthurides aquaticus but I continue to try to photograph this special moment and share it on this website.

 

Sminthurides aquaticus

Colorado Potato Beetle

Colorado Potato Beetles are native to Mexico where they initially fed on burweed. In the 19th century they spread north, following the routes of farmers and gold diggers into the United States and Canada. In 19th-century North America the beetles were found on Solanum rostratum (a species of nightshade) but later they developed a preference for potato plants. Both adults and larvae feed on the leaves and a large number of beetles can cause considerable damage to potato crops.

With the introduction of potatoes in Spain, Colorado Potato Beetles were brought to Europe where they are quite common now. The second world war is believed to have contributed to the spreading of this beetle in Europe. Except for potato plants, Colorado Potato Beetles also feed on eggplants, tomatoes as well as on other nightshade plants, though the wild versions. The Colorado Potato Beetles are beautiful insects who are hated and exterminated by many. Though they still are beautiful little animals and can surely be admired for their survival skills and perseverance.

Colorado Potato Beetle

Dogbane Leaf Beetle

Dogbane Leaf Beetles are member of the leaf beetle family (Chrysomelidae). They are very colourful. Their colours change when you change position and look at them from a different angle. The irdidescent colours are caused by tilted plates that cover the beetle’s pigment layer. The colours can vary from greenish blue to a very bright and warm red. Dogbane leaf beetles are approx. 1 cm tall and quite common in the US and Canada.  They feed on roots and leafs of dogbane as well on milkweed. The larvae feed on roots, stems and leafs.

 

Dogbane Leaf Beetle

Lixus angustatus

Lixus angustatus is a yellow weevil which can be found in Europe. They are members of the Curculionoidea (true weevils) which is the biggest weevil family. In fact it is the biggest family of living things. There are approx. 60.000 weevil species worldwide. Quite impressive eh?

I found all weevils shown on enclosed photos in one spot in Beek, The Netherlands. I had not yet seen them before so I was very pleased to find these cute insects. Like all Weevils, these also like to “drop dead” when recognized. You can see an example of this on picture 3 of this gallery. They will lie for a while, not moving until they feel the danger is gone. This is their way to prevent them from being eaten as prey.

Lixus angustatus

Red Milkweed Beetle

The beautiful red and black Tetraopes tetrophthalmus (Red Milkweed Beetle) can be found in meadows and road sides with milkweed in Eastern United States and Canada. Their eyes are completely divided by the antennae. The larvae of this beetle bore in roots and stems of milkweed. The toxins of the milkweed make this beetle distasteful. This is a chemical defence used other known milkweed-eating insects.

Red Milkweed Beetle

Agrilus sinuatus

Sinuate Pear Borer, a jewel beetle, also called Hawthorn Jewel Beetle. It occurs in both pear trees as well as in hawthorn shrubs. The wood-eating larvae develop over two years under the bark of pear trees. They are considered a pest as large numbers of larvae can sometimes kill young pear trees. Enclosed pictures show the adult beetles.

Agrilus sinuatus

Acorn Weevil

The Acorn Weevil (Curculio glandium) has a very long and slender mouth. This snout can be longer than the weevil’s body. Acorn weevils use their modified sawlike mouthparts to drill/chew holes in an acorn to feed on it. Females use their long ovipositor to lay eggs in the acorn. The eggs hatch in just a few days. The larvae feed on the acorn meat.

For more macro photos of beetles, please follow this link. 

Acorn Weevil

Newly Emerged Ladybugs

Enclosed pictures show some ladybugs which just changed from pupa stage to adult stage. Once they have shed their skin, they are very wet and vulnerable and their colours are quite pale. The dots which are so typical for most ladybug species have not appeared yet. Once the exoskeleton dries, the bright colours and spots will appear. This process usually takes a couple of hours, sometimes a day.

I really like the delicate look of newly hatched ladybugs.

 

For more macro photos of beetles, please follow this link. 

Newly Emerged Ladybugs

Goldenrod Crab Spider

This goldenrod crab spider (Misumena vatia) just caught a fly. With a poisonous bite crab spiders kill their prey. They then suck all the body fluids out of the prey.

The moment I took these pictures the fly was still alive and trying to escape. After consuming this fly, the crab spider dropped it and positioned itself with the front legs raised, ready to grasp any new victim in reach.

For more spider macros, please follow this link.

 

Goldenrod Crab Spider

Calligrapha alni

The Russet Alder Leaf Beetle. Found and photographed at Awenda Provincial Park in Ontario, Canada. Russet Alder Leaf Beetles feed on Alder. There are 38 species of Calligrapha beetles recorded in North America. As these beetles are very host specific, host plant information is very important for determining the species.

I added a picture of a black and white coloured Calligrapha Multipunctata to show the differences in their markings.

For more macro pictures of beetles, please follow this link.

 

Calligrapha alni

Cereal Leaf Beetle

The Cereal Leaf Beetle (Oulema melanopus) overwinters in protected places in grain fields. Once the temperature rises in Spring time (to 10 – 15ºC), they emerge.
They are active for about 6 weeks. They feed on grasses and cereals and are often considered a pest.

The third image in this gallery shows a pregnant female.

For more macro pictures of beetles, please follow this link.

 

Cereal Leaf Beetle

European Honey Bee

The second nice day of Spring 2013… the insects are returning. On these Crocuses many bees could be found. As one image in this gallery will show, not only bees were attracted to the pollen of these Crocus flowers.

For more images of bees, please follow this link. 

European Honey Bee

Calligrapha multipunctata

I found this beautiful black and white Common Willow Calligrapha in Huntsville, Ontario. Later I would discover another beautiful Calligrapha species; Calligrapha Alni  in Penetanguishene, Ontario. I added a picture of this black, white and red beetle at the end of this gallery. I was stunned by the beautiful markings on both of these Calligrapha beetles.

For more macro pictures of beetles, please follow this link.

Calligrapha multipunctata

Lochmaea capria

I found this Willow Leaf Beetle (Lochmaea capria) in Luxembourg. It is quite common, but I never had the opportunity before to take a picture of it.
This leaf beetle feeds on both willow and birch leaves. Avoiding the veins, eating only the soft cells between them. This prevents the trees from being damaged too much.

For more macro pictures of beetles, please follow this link.

 

Lochmaea capria

Cicadella Viridis

Green Leafhopper (Cicadella Viridis). These reach 6-9 mm in length. They are widespread in Europe and can be found in damp grassland and marshy places.

Cicadella Viridis

Tawny mining bee

The Tawny mining Bee (Andrena fulva) is a European species of sand bees. It is a solitary bee. Mining bees live in nests in the ground.

This is a female. The males are very different to the females. The Males are slimmer and are covered in less dense orange coloured hair. Also they have a white tuft of hair on the lower face.

For more images of bees, please follow this link. 

Tawny mining bee

Brown-mottled shield bug

The Brown-mottled Shield Bug (Elasmucha lateralis) is a common bug. Females care for their nymphs throughout their development.

They quite resemble the Parent bug (Elasmucha grisea), which can be found in Europe.

I photographed this Shield Bug in Arrowhead Provincial Park in Huntsville, Ontario, Canada

Brown-mottled shield bug

Empis tesselata

Empis tesselata, A large species (1 – 13 mm) of Dance Fly which can be seen in The Netherlands from April to August.

Empis tesselata

Zebra Spider

This little Zebra Spider (Salticus scenicus) is a common Jumping Spider. This one is very small (approx. 7 mm). It is my first Jumping Spider of the 2013 macro season.

Jumping Spiders do not build webs. They pounce to capture their preys.

For more spider macros, follow this link.

Zebra Spider

Harmonia axyridis

The Harlequin Ladybird (Harmonia axyridis) is native to eastern Asia, but has been introduced to Europe and North America to help control aphids. Now they are considered a pest, threatening the native Ladybird populations. In North America this beetle is commonly known as “Japanese Ladybug” or “Asian Lady Beetle”.

Harmonia axyridis

Pentatoma rufipes

Final instar nymph of the Red-legged Shieldbug Pentatoma rufipes.

Pentatoma rufipes

False Sunflower

Sometimes a flower does not need any insect to make it look great…

False Sunflower

Trirhabda virgata

Trirhabda virgata is a species of leaf beetles found in North America. This beetle was photographed in June 2012 in Huntsville, Ontario (Canada).

Trirhabda virgata

Rhingia campestris

A Hoverfly (Rhingia campestris) licking one of the stamen of this flower. Photographed in Schimmert, The Netherlands, September 2012.

Rhingia campestris

Eristalinus sepulchralis

This European Hoverfly is called  Weidevlekoog Zweefvlieg in Dutch and Schwarze Augenfleck-Schwebfliege in German. I love the eyes of these hoverflies.

Eristalinus sepulchralis

Erica carnea

A close up of a Erica carnea raceme. This subshrub is also known as “Winter Flowering Heather”, “Winter Heath” or “Spring Heath”. It flowers from late winter to early Spring.

I took this picture today (15 February 2013) during my first macro photography session of this season.

Erica carnea

Crab Spider

I love the soft blue colour of this Hydrangea flower. The little crabspider (Misumena vatia) was hardly noticeable on these pale petals, also because it was tiny….

For more spider macros, please follow this link.

Crab Spider

Trichius fasciatus

The Bee Beetle (Trichius fasciatus) can be seen in most parts of Europe from May through July. This one was photographed on a Hydrangea flower in my backyard, June 2012.

Trichius fasciatus

Malachius bipustulatus

A Malachite beetle, a species of soft-winged flower beetles. On this shot it is sitting on a buttercup flower.

Malachius bipustulatus

Cairns Birdwing Butterfly

This male Cairns Birdwing Butterfly (Ornithoptera euphorion) was photographed in Niagara Falls Butterfly Conservatory.

Cairns Birdwing Butterfly

Episyrphus balteatus

Another shot of this beautiful Hoverfly. This hoverfly is quite small, approx. 9 – 12 mm.

Episyrphus balteatus

European Honey Bee

Also called the Western Honey Bee.

For more images of bees, please follow this link. 

European Honey Bee

Misumena Vatia

A white Crab spider with it’s prey… Photographed in Ontario, Canada.

For more spider macros, please follow this link.

Misumena Vatia

Episyrphus balteatus

A widespread species of hoverflies with many “nicknames”….. Like Pyamazweefvlieg in The Netherlands and Cocacolazweefvlieg in Belgium. In the UK they sometimes call it the Marmelade Hoverfly

Episyrphus balteatus

Deraeocoris ruber

This is a nymph of the Mirid Bug (Deraecoris ruber)

Deraeocoris ruber

Longhorn Beetles

A couple of Longhorn Beetles

Longhorn Beetles

Tenthredo schaefferi

A species of Sawfly

Tenthredo schaefferi

Pyrrhocoris apterus

A Firebug sitting on a Common Mallow flower.

Pyrrhocoris apterus

Thistle-head Weevil

Rhinocyllus conicus, a little Weevil found on a Thistle. July, The Netherlands.

Thistle-head Weevil

Square-headed Wasp

Ectemnius sp, A Digger wasp.

Square-headed Wasp

Misumena vatia

Goldenrod Crab Spider sittng on Forget-me-not.

For more spider macros, please follow this link.

Misumena vatia

Stenopterus rufus

A species of round-necked longhorn beetles. This is a mating couple I photographed in July.

Stenopterus rufus

Oedemera nobilis (male)

This male shows why it is called a Thick-legged Flower Beetle. Only the male has large bulges on the thighs.

Oedemera nobilis (male)

Golden Tortoise Beetle

A Golden Tortoise Beetle (Charidotella sexpunctata) I photographed in Kingston, Ontario, Canada.

Golden Tortoise Beetle

Flower Crab Spider

A little white crab spider (Misumena vatia) ambush hunting on a wild flower.

Flower Crab Spider

Broad Shouldered Leaf Beetle

A couple of Oreina speciosa mating

Broad Shouldered Leaf Beetle

Liocoris tripustulatus

A small, quite common but interesting little insect…. Most of the time you will find this bug on nettles, but this one was sitting on one of my garden flowers.

Liocoris tripustulatus

Oedemera nobilis (female)

A Thick-legged Flower Beetle in the evening sunlight. I like the glittery shine on this beautiful insect. You can also see some pollen.

 

Oedemera nobilis (female)

Eristalis arbustorum

Another European species of hover fly “Eristalis arbustorum”. In Dutch this is called “kleine bijvlieg”.

It is funny how every hoverfly has its own name in Dutch.

Eristalis arbustorum

Lucidota atra

Black Firefly. I photographed this insect in Penetanguishene, Ontario (Canada).

 

Lucidota atra

Poppy

This imgage shows how beautiful a simple Poppy looks up close. And they all are different.

Poppy

Aster

A very bright Aster flower. They make great backdrops for insects, but also without any bugs they are quite interesting and pretty.

Aster

Wolf Spider

A little Wolf spider sitting on a yellow flower. This was shot in September. The macro season in The Netherlands was quite short this year.

Wolf Spider

Emerald Damselfly

An Emerald Damselfly (Lestes sponsa)

Emerald Damselfly

Asian Lady Beetle

An Asian Lady Beetle Harmonia axyridis) sitting on a decaying Hortensia flower.

Asian Lady Beetle

Dangling Sunlover

This European hoverfly is called Hemophilius pendulus. This would be translated from Latin and Greek into “Dangling Sunlover”. I very much like this name.

Dangling Sunlover

Marsh Fly

A Marsh Fly / Snail-killing Fly (Sciomyzidae) I found in my backyard, where I also find many snails.

Marsh Fly

Little Leafhopper

I found this cute little leafhopper (nymph?) on some rusty metal.

Little Leafhopper

♀♂

Two mating Hoverflies.

More to come soon……

♀♂

Helophilus pendulus

A European Hoverfly sitting on a very bright Aster flower

Helophilus pendulus

Cryptocephalus moraei

This Leaf beetle measures 3 to 5 mm in length.

Cryptocephalus moraei

Honey Bee

A European Honey Bee (Apis mellifera) collecting nectar and pollen

For more images of bees, please follow this link. 

Honey Bee

Azure Damselfly

A portrait of an Azure Damselfly (Coenagrion puella)

Azure Damselfly

Aeshna cyanea

A female Southern Hawker

Aeshna cyanea

Lycaena phlaeas

Also called Small Copper or Common Copper

Lycaena phlaeas

Eristalinus sepulchralis

A European species Hoverfly

Eristalinus sepulchralis

Acidia cognata

A Little Fruitfly

Acidia cognata

Common Darter

A female Common Darter (Sympetrum striolatum)

Common Darter

Rhododendron Leafhopper

These colourful insects live on Rhododendrons in my frontyard as well as my backyard.

Rhododendron Leafhopper

Close-up Of A Fly

Looking through a macro lens, you will notice that there are many different species of flies.

Close-up Of A Fly

Red Spider Mites

These very small creatures live in my backyard. They are shiny and have skinny legs.

For this shot I used the Canon MP-E65 lens with a magnification of 4-5x.

Red Spider Mites

Goldenrod Crab Spider

I found this Goldenrod Crab Spider (Misumena vatia) on a flower in Huntsville, Ontario (Canada). These spiders can change colour from white to yellow and from yellow back to white, depending on the flower they are sitting in for hunting.

Goldenrod Crab Spider

European Beauty

This is an example of an adult butterfly of the European Peacock (Aglais io). They are quite common in The Netherlands. It is always nice to see them. They have such bright colours.

 

European Beauty

Furry Bee

This picture shows how hairy bees are

For more images of bees, please follow this link. 

Furry Bee

Tiny Moths

Two very small Moths on a Speedwell flower.

Tiny Moths

Hoverfly

This Hoverfly was sitting on a Hosta flower. I liked the combination of the black, yellow and lilac.

Hoverfly

Green Sweat Bee

I found this little beauty near the St. Lawrence River (Ontario, Canada). They are much smaller than you would expect. But so beautiful..

Green Sweat Bee

Psyllobora 22-punctata

22-Spot Ladybug. So I think we are looking at 44 spots on this image…..

Psyllobora 22-punctata

At Home

This (Canadian) little Jumping Spider looked like it was feeling very comfortable in his little home.

At Home

Small Milkweed Bug

A very colourful bug sitting on a beautiful flower. I photographed this Small Milkweed Bug in Penetanguishene, Ontario, Canada.

Small Milkweed Bug

Dragonfly Up Close

They are a bit shy, but once you manage to get close to them, they start watching you. It is nice to see them tilting their little heads to check you out.

Dragonfly Up Close

Sunshine

This flower reminds us why it is called Sunflower…..

Sunshine

Common Blue

I have not seen many butterflies this year. It was nice to see this one.

Common Blue

Another Springtail

Another shot of a cute springtail dicyrtomina ornata. This picture was taken in January.

Another Springtail

Crabspider

A little Crabspider (misumena vatia) just caught a fly.

Crabspider

Vanessa Atalanta

A bit worn and its colours faded, but still beautiful

Vanessa Atalanta

Ruby-Tailed Wasp

The most glamorous Bug in The Netherlands

Ruby-Tailed Wasp

Snail on a Sunflower

After a rain shower you will find these little snails everywhere. To find one in the heart of a flower is always a nice surprise.

Snail on a Sunflower

Red Soldier Beetles

A couple of Common Red Soldier Beetles on a Thistle flower

Red Soldier Beetles

Little Spider

A little spider I found out in the fields. They look very cute up close.

Little Spider

Broad Nosed Weevil

This is one of the biggest Weevils I have ever seen.

Broad Nosed Weevil

Forget-me-not

It is always nice to see the soft pink and blue colours on these little flowers.

Forget-me-not

Baby Garden Snail

A very curious baby Garden Snail looking over the edge of a Hydrangea flower

Baby Garden Snail

Hoverfly

A Hoverfly (Eupeodes corollae) on some Creeping Speedwell.

Hoverfly

Rhododendron Leafhoppers

A couple of Rhododendron Leafhoppers

Rhododendron Leafhoppers

Hoverfly

Very common Hoverfly. They all have very nice markings.

Hoverfly

Springtail on a Sunflower Seed

The Sunflower seed makes it easy to see how big Springtails are 🙂

Springtail on a Sunflower Seed

Common Field Hopper

I love these little creeps. They are so curious…. they check you out while you try to take pictures of them.

Common Field Hopper

Cabbage White

Pieris rapae, a very common butterfly in The Netherlands.

Cabbage White

Caterpillar Papilio Machaon

This is going to be a beautiful Old World Swallowtail butterfly.

Caterpillar Papilio Machaon

Rose Buds

These Rose buds were tiny…

Rose Buds

Mint Leaf Beetle

Chrysolina herbacea. One of the first shots with my Canon MP-E65 macro lens.

Mint Leaf Beetle

Comma Butterfly

Polygonia c-album – Comma Butterfly, shot late October 2010 in The Netherlands.

Comma Butterfly