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Defeated by a dragonfly

Defeated by a dragonfly
Photo Information
Copyright: Peter van Zoest (PeterZ) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2010-05-15
Categories: Reptiles
Camera: Nikon D300, AF Nikkor 70-300mm f4-5.6 G, Digital RAW
Exposure: f/7.1, 1/320 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Very well documented! [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2011-09-19 4:50
Viewed: 4980
Points: 82
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Crocodilus niloticus chamses, the West African Nile Crocodile, is found in freshwater habitats of Senegal in a few isolated populations.

Crocodylus is derived from the Greek krokodeilos which means literally "pebble worm" (kroko = pebble; deilos = worm, or man) referring to the appearance of a crocodile.
Niloticus means "of the Nile" (Nile River, Africa)

Given the wide distribution range, a number of population differences have been observed, and several subspecies proposed. These are rarely differentiated in the literature, however, and they are not officially recognised.

Suggested subspecies: C. n. africanus (East African Nile crocodile), C. n. chamses (West African Nile crocodile), C. n. corviei (South African Nile crocodile), C. n. madagascariensis (Malagasy Nile crocodile, Malagasy alligator, Croco Mada), C. n. niloticus (Ethiopian Nile crocodile), C. n. pauciscutatus (Kenyan Nile crocodile, Kenya alligator, Kenya caiman), C. n. suchus (Central African Nile crocodile)

Wide habitat preferences, reflecting their success and distribution- e.g. lakes, rivers, freshwater swamps, brackish water. Sub-adults disperse into different habitats, away from breeding areas, when they reach a length of approximately 1.2 m. Nile crocodiles modify their habitat by digging dens (usually with their snouts and feet) into which they retreat from adverse conditions such as temperature extremes.

Considerable variation exists throughout the range of the Nile crocodile. Generally, it is a large crocodilian, averaging 5 m in length but reportedly reaching 6 m in rare instances. There is some evidence that Nile crocodiles in cooler countries (eg. South Africa) reach slightly smaller adult sizes (4 m). There are two known population of dwarf Nile crocodiles living on the extreme limits of the species' range, in Mali and even the Sahara Desert! Due to suboptimal conditions, adults average between 2 and 3 metres. Juveniles are dark olive brown with black cross-banding on the tail and body. This banding becomes fainter in adults. Total no. of teeth = 64-68.

Although the juveniles are generally restricted to eating small aquatic invertebrates and insects, they soon move onto larger vertebrates (fish, amphibians and reptiles). Adults, however, can potentially take a wide range of large vertebrates, including antelope, buffalo, young hippos, and large cats. Fish and smaller vertebrates often form the greatest part of their diet, however. As with C. porosus, they have a reputation as being man-eaters, although probably kill more people than all other crocodilian species combined. Along with hippos and lions, crocodiles account for perhaps a few hundred deaths and disappearances each year, although exact figures are very hard to verify. Nile crocodiles will also often scavenge from carcasses, together with a number of other animals, all of which seem to tolerate each others' presence. They have a rather well-known relationship with several species of birds (e.g. spur-wing plover, called "trochilus" by Herodotus) which are reputed to pick pieces of meat from between the teeth of the crocodiles as they gape - the birds gain a meal, the crocodiles have their teeth cleaned of scraps they could not eat themselves.

This species digs hole nests up to 50cm deep in sandy banks, several metres from the water. These may be in close proximity to other nests. Timing of nesting behaviour varies with geographic location - it takes place during the dry season in the north, but at the start of the rainy season further south, usually from November through to the end of December. Females reach sexual maturity around 2.6 m, males at around 3.1 m. Females lay around 40 to 60 eggs in the nest, although this number is quite variable between different populations. Females remain near the nest at all times. Incubation time averages 80 to 90 days (ranges from 70 to 100 days), after which females open the nest and carry the juveniles to the water. Both males and females have been reported to assist hatching by gently cracking open eggs between their tongue and upper palate. Hatchlings remain close to the juveniles for up to two years after hatching, often forming a creche with other females. As with many crocodilians, older juveniles tend to stay away from older, more territorial animals.

maurydv, cobra112, Pitoncle, BREARD, maaciejka, joska, Dis. Ac., jlinaresp, kapildk, flashpoint, bungbing, anel, buscape, PaulLees, Miss_Piggy, KOMSIS, williewhistler, PeakXV, Luis52, jusninasirun, CeltickRanger has marked this note useful
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To batu: distancePeterZ 1 09-19 06:18
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Critiques [Translate]

Hallo Peter,
a superb capture of this seemingly accommodating crocodile, the dragonfly is too small prey, very good sharpness and splendid colours, excellent frontal point of view
Best regards

Ciao Peter. Excellente DOF for the "quiet..." friend. Very godo light and stunning detail for the graphic skin. Great shot MF!


Ciao Peter, great capture of beautiful crocodile, lovelyscene with dragonfly, splendid sharpness, fine details and wonderful natural colors, very well done my friend, ciao Silvio

  • Great 
  • batu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1079 W: 293 N: 4497] (16383)
  • [2011-09-19 6:00]
  • [+]

Hello Peter,
obviously, the dragonfly is not a prey for the crocodile. But what about you - just in front of it ?-)
The presented picture is proof that you captured the crocodile and not vice-versa.
What was the distance - from eye to eye?
Best wishes, Peter

  • Great 
  • nagraj Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1618 W: 106 N: 3208] (15166)
  • [2011-09-19 6:25]

Very interesting viewpoint and perspective, fine image. tfs.

hallo Peter
Aparte foto
Leuk die libel op zijn rug
mooie kleuren en goed van scherpte
super om de foto zo van voren te nemen ,maakt het weer anders
bedankt groetjes lou

Bonjour Peter,
La masse du sujet est amplifiée par l'utilisation du téléobjectif mais la valorisation est tout de même intéressante sous une bonne profondeur de champ et une belle lumière.
A bientôt sur TN pour de nouvelles aventures.

amazingly sharp capture, greetings Ori

  • Great 
  • zetu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 967 W: 26 N: 3888] (16941)
  • [2011-09-19 8:07]

wow! amazing portrait!

Bonjour Peter,
pas sympa le Monsieur ! Belle image de ce crocodile dans son élément naturel. Mais, il est préférable d'avoir un gros téléobjectif pour ce genre d'image.

Hi Peter.
Great photo. Amazing crocodile. Is it safe to take such a photo? :)
Excellent point of view. Great composition.
Have a nice week,

Hello Peter,
What a superb capture of a interesting species of crocodile.
Exceptional photo with such good details, perfect focus and sharpness.
The vivid colours are superb and the composition is great.

Hi Peter,
Great shot with nice POV and excellent colours. Very good sharpness and details.

  • Great 
  • joska Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 806 W: 0 N: 4092] (22535)
  • [2011-09-19 9:28]

Hi Peter,
Splendid photo of this West African Nile Crocodile, great sharpnes and fine details, interesting reltionship with this Dragonfly, TFS!

very good pose and your POV, great photo performance!
regards Nasos

Hallo Peter,

zo dit is een mooie ontmoeting in de parijs -dakar race.
Goed gezichtsveld en scherpte.
Mooie kleuren.
Dit is mooi om in het echt te zien...


Hello Peter friend
Ha... ha... ha.. :) May be the more funny shot in TN today!... I like a lot the actitude of this great monster with the dragonfly on back!... Also a great technnical shot, you've used a very elocuent composition and cut.

Hi Peter,

What a fantastic picture this is! Really big croc but still the dragonfly has dared to sit there on the back.
You'd captured the funny moment very well & brilliantly titled.
Well done & TFS.

picture of crocodile is really funny ..
the gem ,Peter .. the little blue dragonfly!

Great point of view, good details and light. Nice eye contact. regards yiannis

  • Great 
  • siggi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3097 W: 109 N: 12399] (52850)
  • [2011-09-19 12:10]

Hello Peter.
Excellently near of this crocodile,Sting really subjectly, Completely between
Composition and concentrating upon the eye. Have you seen the dragonfly before or closer?
Best regards Siggi

  • Great 
  • lousat Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 6595 W: 89 N: 15659] (65489)
  • [2011-09-19 15:38]

Hi Peter,a touch of humour need sometimes on TN! I like a lot your title..eeehe...and the pic is a truely masterpiece,what a impressive quality and what a perspective! My best compliments,have a nice day,Luciano

  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2011-09-19 19:01]

Hello Peter,
If it wasn't for your title I doubt if I would have even noticed the little hitchhiker on his back. What an awesome looking creature. I'm sure thankful we don't have these guys in the waterways of Ohio.
Attractive low POV and showing excellent detail. Wonderful coloration and nice DOF.

Impressive and somewhat funny scene Peter! Beautiful photo.

Hello Peter,
A very nice shot of this crocodile and dragonfly on his back, he looks lazy and relaxing, very good details sharpness, excellent depth of field, a lovely moment captured,
Thanks for sharing and have a nice day,
Best Regards,

  • Great 
  • anel Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 3053 W: 3 N: 8715] (40574)
  • [2011-09-20 3:41]

Hello Peter,
How funny this picture and you have well chosen the title for it. The crocodile looks really defeated..and you give us the explanation. But I like the idea of the strong dragonfly too:-) Well shown this frontal view. Original shot presented in a very natural manner.
Kind regards

Hello Peter,
fine capture of this Nile Crocodile with good sharpness and a well chosen POV. I also like the natural colours and your informative note.
Best wishes,

  • Great 
  • tcr Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 158 W: 8 N: 538] (3384)
  • [2011-09-20 8:39]

Striking image.
Effective perspective, composition and timing.
Well seen and well presented.

Impresionante por el ángulo empleado y la rareza de la especie, sobre todo para los Europeos !
Buena naturalidad en la pose y en los colores. Excelente trabajo... supogo que estabas lejos del animal !!!

Un abrazo Peter: J. Ignasi.

Hello Peter,
A great capture of this huge reptile taken from a good frontal POV with fine details, excellent sharpness and natural colours. I also like the composition. Well done!

Hello friend Peter,
extraordinary photography, excellent sharpness and beautiful natural colors. great POV
Thank you for sharing
Hello Vanni

Great scott! Supernatural Peter. This id a classic if ever there was one. I wonder if the crock even felt it. One mistaken swift tail move could take it out!

Hi Peter, Waoow what a scary situation Hoooo:) very nice capture here my friend Peter, superb sharpness with fine detail, splendid lighting control under the harsh available light, good effort here my friend and very well done,
Best Regards,


Hallo Peter
What an interesting posting, and not one I am used to from your lens. I had to really look closely to find that dragonfly, but once found I cannot believe I did not see it. You have captured superb details here. I like the different that usual point of view, as it is not everyday we see one of these from this angle. Thanks for sharing, and also thanks for interesting reading material. Best regards.

  • Great 
  • KOMSIS Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 820 W: 0 N: 2419] (10674)
  • [2011-09-21 7:39]

Hallo Peter,
Nile crocodile, and the dragonfly ..
Crocodile terrible, looks tired. Light and details are very good.
Best wishes,

Hallo Peter,a super shot,the croc looks content with its situation.Nice one.
Best regards Les.

  • Great 
  • PeakXV Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 121 W: 0 N: 544] (3135)
  • [2011-09-22 20:42]

Hello Peter,

Ha-ha, most likely they are old friends. The croc is posed nicely & even appears in deep thought. I like the low POV that shows us well the texture of this creature's form. Beautiful earthy colors as well. Great stuff!



funny picture Peter, congratulations !
excellent perspective !

have a good time,

ciao, tino

  • Great 
  • Luis52 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1175 W: 8 N: 4240] (15809)
  • [2011-09-26 15:21]

Hola Peter.
We dont have the oportunity to see this kind of wild animals here so there is always nice to see in a great photo like this one.
Great image nice name. Like David and Goliat.

Hello Peter,
I like the title and how well you have captured this shot. The pose is unique in fine sharpness and details.
Thanks and kind regards,

Hello Peter

WOW i had missed this great shot of the
West African Nile Crocodile, very fine POV
at its level giving that eye-contact of
the Crocodile, great focus, sharpness
ans details, i can see the dragonfly, TFS


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