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Pretty Plain Tiger

Pretty Plain Tiger
Photo Information
Copyright: Pam Russell (coasties) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3749 W: 483 N: 8155] (28054)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2006-06-04
Categories: Insects
Camera: Canon EOS 20D, Canon EF 100-400mm L IS USM, Digital RAW 200, Hoya UV 77mm
Details: (Fill) Flash: Yes
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2006-06-10 4:02
Viewed: 3836
Points: 10
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Danaus chrysippus

Common Name: African Monarch, Plain Tiger

Large and conspicuous, the plain tiger butterfly is a member of the monarch butterfly family and is common across Arabia. Unpalatable to predators owing to the toxic diet of its caterpillars, it is faithfully mimicked by an unrelated butterfly, the diadem. It readily drinks nectar, especially from natural desert flowers, but opportunistically also takes in salts from damp soils.

Widespread: Adult plain tiger butterflies are on the wing in Arabia for about half the year, from September to June. In the extremely hot summers, they exist primarily as pupae, ready to hatch when the weather begins to cool. They are very common in the winter months - the plain tiger pictures featured in this article were all taken in Dhahran in Eastern Saudi Arabia over several years, between November and May. The butterfly is widespread in the old world tropics and subtropics, ranging from Australasia and China to Arabia and Africa.

Striking patterns signal danger: The plain tiger butterfly is a rich, honey brown colour, with jet black tips on the forewings broken by a prominent white bar. This vivid pattern, coupled with its slow flight, would seem to present an easy target for birds. In fact, its bright colours are a strong warning, and the leisurely flight is designed to ensure that birds notice the colours. Experiments have revealed that captive birds quickly learn to avoid eating plain tigers and apparently transmit this knowledge to other birds. Though a few plain tiger butterflies do get killed, their sacrifice protects the rest of their family - since the birds will never touch another plain tiger.

Nectar and other nutrients: As with most butterflies, the plain tiger is strongly attracted to flower nectar. Other nutrients may also include minerals and salts obtained from damp patches of earth. I have photographed plain tigers in Dhahran drinking from damp sand after heavy rain. At Dhi Ain, a beautiful old oasis in the mountains below Baha in Western Saudi Arabia, I also observed plain tigers drinking from the wet sides of irrigation channels.

The above obtained from http://pr.sv.net/aw/2006/MAR2006/english/pages012.htm


Camera: Canon 20D
Time of day: 12:45 p.m.
Date: 4th June 2006
Weather conditions: Inside Tropical Butterfly House
Lens: Canon 100-400mm L IS
Filter: Hoya 77mm UV
Shutter Speed: 1/60
F-Stop: F/5.6
Focal Length: 400mm
ISO: 200
External Flash: Canon 580EX Speedlite
Support: Hand Held
Original file type: Digital Raw

elefantino, phlr, jchemas has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Hello Pam, excllent details, BG, POV, DOF, perfect colors, Great JObn, TFS Kyle

Hi Pam,
nice details compo, colors and B.
All is ok.
A great work!!!

What a great capture Pam.
I love the solfteness of the colors and the superb details.
Excellent composition, POV and BG.
Ones again, I love the frame.

  • Great 
  • sAner Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1455 W: 74 N: 1426] (4750)
  • [2006-06-10 18:17]

I really like this one Pam. Great colors, sharp focus, well composed and I just love the frame. Well done & TFS!


  • Great 
  • phlr Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1237 W: 130 N: 882] (2821)
  • [2006-06-11 4:43]

Very beautiful butterfly Pam!
Very beautiful on colours!
Very good DOF and details!
Very nice POV too!
5* and TFS!

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