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Make My Knees Go Weak!

Make My Knees Go Weak!
Photo Information
Copyright: Iris Hues (iris) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 479 W: 60 N: 970] (3088)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2009-03-01
Categories: Mammals
Camera: Canon SX100 IS
Exposure: f/4.3, 1/320 seconds
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2009-03-01 6:28
Viewed: 4824
Points: 66
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Hello my friends,

On this weekend break I present to you this beautiful scene I found unfolding on a tree trunk. It was a sunny and cool January afternoon and I was on my regular stroll.I loved the way the sunlight streamed in illuminating just the couple while the background was thrown into shadows.

For many tree squirrels and flying squirrels courtship involves a mating chase. One to many males are attracted to an estrous (the periodic state of sexual excitement in the female of most mammals, excluding humans, that immediately precedes ovulation) female by various cues including her vocalization, behavior and odour. As the male congregates near the female, they jockey for the best position which is the closest to her possible. Although the dominant male tries to cautiously approach her, she would fend him off. At the same time he must watch his back and defend his position from other males. A stalemate will arise and without warning the female would run away, those males who can continue will try to keep up with her. This is commonly observed –wherein a female is seen bounding quickly up a tree or across the yard to a hiding place, while a chaos of males flee after her trying to locate her. The male gives out a characteristic call while hunting for the female mostly on the basis of her scent.

The first male to locate the female will mate with her. If another male happens to discover the couple, he will rush and try to destroy the scene.Sometimes the attack can be quite vicious where the the female too could get hurt. The chase is mostly done by dominant males, but younger squirrels(less than 2.5 yrs) also mate. Studies from University of Kansas recorded a smart strategy adopted by these young males. They would hang about in the females home range but wouldn’t take part in the chase. Once the female breaks away from the chase group the young smarties would go looking for her. They have a high chance of finding her and mating with her.

Researchers also tried to address the question, “Does the female choose the male or males with whom she mates?” some studies do point out that the female has the power to reject her suitor, thus even suggesting the inappropriateness of a mating chase and suggestion of scenario wherein the female actually leads the male on.

Thanks for looking in.
Have a fantastic week ahead:)


Thorington Jr.,Richard.W.and Ferrel, Katie.(2006).“Squirrel – The Animal Answer Guide”,208(pp), The John Hopkins University Press,Maryland.

maurydv, matatur, adilakbar, caroze, eng55, CeltickRanger, jaycee, Heaven, gannu, haraprasan, rousettus, elif, eqshannon, Luis52, Dis. Ac., tuslaw, Alex99, Argus, meyerd, jusninasirun, boreocypriensis, lc4giala, NinaM, JORAPAVI, shree, oscarromulus has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To papajoehermit: Thanks Joe!iris 1 03-11 21:45
To Argus: Hi: Spaceiris 1 03-07 07:52
To Gert-Paassen: Spaceiris 1 03-05 22:08
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Critiques [Translate]

Hello Silpa,
what a wonderful picture of this pair of squirrels taken from an excellent POV with superb sharpness, lighting and timing, i like the bright colours against a dark BG.
Best regards.

Namaste Silpa,
this moment is so cute, I like to see them together, very pretty, thanks
Sabine - wishnugaruda

A good capture and a perfect timing Silpa, a pleasant scene indeed for us, but especially for behaviour students.

great capture, TFS Ori

Hi Silpa,
Nice moment captured. Nice light falling on them. Nicely composed. TFS - Regards - Adil.

Beautifull scene and nice story! Thanks, CarOze

  • Great 
  • eng55 Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1256 W: 42 N: 1976] (5892)
  • [2009-03-01 13:12]

Hi Silpa,
Magnificent capture.I liked POV,moment you caught,clear details,sharpness and composition a lot.Masterpiece!
Thanks for posting.

hello Silpa

excellent timing from you to shoot these squirrels
that are i can say camouflaged with their environement,
fine POV, DOF and framing, excellent focus,
with great sharpness and details, TFS


  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2009-03-01 15:34]

Hi Silpa,

I saw squirrels every day when I lived on the East coast and never, ever, did I see a scene like this! Great timing to catch this moment so perfectly. I remember seeing this species in India and loved them. Excellent colors, details, setting, background and composition.


  • Great 
  • Heaven Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 996 W: 123 N: 2341] (7912)
  • [2009-03-01 22:21]

Hi Silpa!

I would like to congratulate you for this magnificent picture! It's a beautiful testimony of the life out in nature and a superb example of a wildlife picture. Moreover, it gets its real dimension together with the very interesting and pleasant notes. On the technical side, I particularly like the unity of the colour tones and the composition with the branch and the dark background.

Kind regards


Hi Silpa, great capture of cute couple in lovely pose, wonderful details and splendid sharpness, very well done, ciao Silvio

  • Great 
  • gannu Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 988 W: 4 N: 3277] (14761)
  • [2009-03-02 16:12]

Silpa,Fantastic shot with superb notes. The scene truly shows the love and feelings they have. Good work. Ganesh

Hi Silpa,
A nice capture of these two squirrels courtship. Very well composed with sharp details and I also like the black background here. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Hi Silpa
what a nice scene and its wonderful capture. focus, POV and composition great, but timing also wonderful. good notes. thanks for sharing, best wishes

An absolute treasure in composition, technique and presentation. We tend to prioritize the mechanics and yet miss some of the more important roles which nature plays...Very fine picture and well received in the thoughts which went though you as you took this one!

  • Great 
  • Luis52 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1175 W: 8 N: 4240] (15809)
  • [2009-03-04 9:32]

Hola Slipa.
As you said in the note the light gives an excellent contrast in this fine photo. The pose of the squirrels on the tree are also nice.
Great note Slipa.

Hi Silpa,

nice shot from this 2 Squirrels,they like each other to kiss.
Beautiful colours.
Maybe beneath the picture a little more space.


Hello Silpa,
this is a very beautiful capture of nice squirrels! I like poses, composition, great details and colors.

Best regards, Leonid

  • Great 
  • tuslaw Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2754 W: 282 N: 4931] (19883)
  • [2009-03-05 16:15]

Exceptional capture Silpa,
Excellent detail, composition and color with just the right exposure. A really cute couple shown in a lovable pose. Great job!! TFS.

  • Great 
  • Alex99 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4072 W: 133 N: 7096] (23735)
  • [2009-03-06 12:10]

Hi Silpa.
First of all many thanks for terrific comments. I am pleased a lot, my dear friend. Second, I also am amazed with superb shot of a wonderful scene. Fantastic sharpness and details. DOF is really precise. Lights and colours are amazing too. POV and composition are simply brilliant. Bravo. Excellent work. My compliments.

  • Great 
  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2009-03-06 22:17]
  • [+]

Hello Silpa,
A fine paparazi capture of a couple of tree squirrels taken in superb lighting to allow excellent sharpness against an OOF dark natural BG that make them show up superbly well.
The composition is good too but if you had the chance to take it with just a little more space below the hanging tail it would have been perfect.
A delightful capture in any case and thanks for sharing it!
Hvae a good weekend,

  • Great 
  • Marx44 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 172 W: 97 N: 926] (3891)
  • [2009-03-06 23:39]

Hello Silpa,

Superb close up, the appearence is very sweet.


Hi Silpa,

I don't want to miss this sight of the squirrels. Since you got the many compliments due I only add: great moment of action. My compliments!


Definitely worthy of any squirrel documentary on "Animal Planet." Great catch on your "stroll".

Assalamualaikkum Silpa,

This is really nice shot with the pair in their moment of intimacy. The big trunk and the diagonal lighting are just brilliant in the frame. Very well written notes and something beautiful for us all in TE from North India. Thanks for sharing and have a wonderful week ahead.

Best regards,

Hi Silpa, a great time you captured here and you present us a special moment:) Lovely and expertly taken shot from a great POV.
TFS and cheers,

  • Great 
  • roges Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 957 W: 0 N: 1329] (6264)
  • [2009-03-14 1:00]

Splendid Silpa !
A very nice catch with some beautiful colors.
Besides these photographic works ... ... my pictures are a pale consolation.

Hello Silpa
Very beautiful and romantic moment with most excellent details and natural colors, congratulations!

  • Great 
  • NinaM Gold Star Critiquer [C: 773 W: 3 N: 1157] (4077)
  • [2009-03-14 7:43]

Coucou Silpa, this is beautiful and what great notes. I have learned through reading them. The first thing I noticed in your picture is the beautiful light, almost dimmed, and the colours of the picture, all brownish, almost monochrome. It gives a distinct feel to your picture and what is going on with these two. I would call it intimacy. Many thanks, a wonderful post.


Hola Silpa,
Magnífica captura en una pose muy interesante y simpática, buena definición, luz y color natural, saludos
José Ramón

Hello Silpa,
First of all, I must apologise for my callous tardiness.
You wrote such a wonderful critique on my mountain picture nearly two weeks ago and I forgot to reciprocate or even write a word in thanks. I am ashamed! After all, you are still a busy student and your being able to find time to write a detailed critique was an act of extraordinary kindness and consideration on your part.
At the same time, I was a loser too to have missed seeing this eloquent image you created with so much feeling and also with immense technical dexterity. I remember the days you used to borrow somebody's camera with a degree of diffidence. Now you own one and use it like a professional. I'm so happy.
Needless to say, this is an image that, accompanied by a well-penned note, leaves one full of joy at seeing something in nature that is evocative of an emotion given to all the creatures in equal measure -- LOVE.
The picture says it all. No need for stereotyped words.
Thanks and regards.

Hello Silpa,

The nom de plume "iris hues" is very appropriate and your gallery has pictures that are taken with diligence. You seem a professional photographer.

Very nice emotion captured and the POV was apt.
Keep Shooting!


  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2009-03-20 5:35]

Hi Silpa,
excellent shot and excellent presentation. The note and story is so brilliantly composed and it gives such a lovely line.
Well lighted shot and the moment of captured was really fantastic. I must congratulate you for this one in a million shots.
Superbsly composed.


Hey Silpa,

I have been to your gallery before and I was so pleasantly surprised and amazed to see how can one deliver such a complete package - each shot of yours is beautiful, simply beautiful - and accompanied by even beautiful, poetic note with it. Your notes are a delight to read, as are your shots to look at. I must say you are a wonderful presenter - one of the very few best ones I came across.

No wonder your gallery stands out amidst thousand of members on TN!

Coming back to your shot - its again lovely. Nice use of lighting, a wonderful composition but what steals the show is the 'moment'!



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