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Insect photography and ethics
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Deanimator



Joined: 23 Oct 2012
Posts: 367
Location: Rocky River, Ohio, U.S.A.

PostPosted: Sun Mar 19, 2017 4:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My recent plunge into focus stacking (see my question about CFL wattages) has primarily involved tiny black flies by whom I've recently become afflicted. They get into everything, from a cold cup of coffee to loaves of bread sealed with twist ties.

I kill these things by the dozens with a spray bottle filled with soapy water, so as not to have every surface in my kitchen (and elsewhere) drenched in Raid.

Do I feel bad about killing these pests? Not one bit. I'd like to be able to eat a meal or drink a cup of tea without being bothered by (much less ingesting) them.

The fact that they're a challenging photomacrography subject when scraped off of the kitchen cabinets with an index card is partial compensation for the nuisance they create.

I don't go looking for spiders or centipedes to kill when they keep to out of the way places. However when they're in my home, they're in MY domain, and I won't hesitate to kill one that decides to venture out of the corners of the room and onto my computer desk... or into my bed.
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mortenoen



Joined: 14 Feb 2017
Posts: 56
Location: Nissedal, Norway

PostPosted: Sun Mar 19, 2017 5:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Greetings, Deanimator! You probaly know me better as NoRules over at DPreview Smile I started this thread because this killing business was a very new thing to me. If you read it carefully, you'll see we are of the same mind. What walks around in my house and has nothing to be there for, I capture and release, or kill.
Each spring I have an anthill on my doorstep, and I always do away with them in the most savage way, with poison. Only this spring, they will end up on a photographers table when they are dead!
Fun thing is, I have become less afraid of bugs, and handle them much more frequently than before, so in sum, I end up capturing and releasing a lot more then I used to kill. The only creatures that finds no mercy in my house are wasps. Crazy predators they are! You do not want to find a 2cm wasp in your bed, I promise you.

Anyway, if you can find a good answer to your wattage question, please post it over at the other forum!
Cheers!
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The limits of my language means the limits of my world -Ludwig Wittgenstein
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mtuell



Joined: 11 May 2016
Posts: 257
Location: Tucson, AZ

PostPosted: Sun Mar 19, 2017 8:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I also have considered this, both from the live/stunned/killing of an insect, etc. and the flux that a protists,etc see when under the microscope.

First, for comparison, direct sun at the equator at sea level is right about 1 KW/m^2, or 1 mW/mm^2.

Consider a 20 W bulb, with perhaps 1% of the light making it to your subject, or 200 mW. If you are illuminating a 500 micron circle, that is approximately 0.2 mm^2, so is 1 W/mm^2. Even this is 1000x direct sunlight, and often we have brighter bulbs and smaller illumination circles. A puny human would fry to a crisp if illuminated as we routinely do to protists.

Do insects/arachnids feel pain? I don't know for sure, but I'd say, "yes". At the very least, they feel discomfort, as evidenced by a video I took of a spider I captured in a well slide and viewed with a 10x objective with fluorescence. He didn't mind "normal" illumination too much, but turning on the UV - a definite reaction occurred almost immediately!

https://lavinia.as.arizona.edu/~mtuell/video/spider%2010x%202.wmv (10 MB .wmv) and

https://lavinia.as.arizona.edu/~mtuell/video/spider%2010x.wmv (134 MB .wvm - needs editing to remove boring parts...)

So, yes, from a technical perspective, I do feel bad for subjects which I don't find already dead...

My 2 cents,
Mike
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rjlittlefield
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Joined: 01 Aug 2006
Posts: 18244
Location: Richland, Washington State, USA

PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2017 8:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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This thread remains locked.

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