Science and Photography

It’s been a long a ago since I first thought in a way to work my background, in biology sciences and my work as a photographer.

Living in Brazil leaves you very short options, since full time wildlife photography is more an exception than a possibility for a young professional. Using photography as a tool is very common and there would be no chance of me finding the holly Graal with a picture…

Than I turned my attention to what researchers were doing in means of photography. Are they any good? It’s it just for a documentary purpose? What’s is going on?

My last time with a researcher I could understand some of the needs and frustrations. The task of shooting his collection was  ” so huge” that he could even imagine it happening…

Fishes are my main interest  in biology so, I was clear about what would be my focus. As a fan of scientific papers, I could understand where the pictures published could be improved.

 That’s where ”  Updated on live specimens photography, using digital technology ” was born =D

 It was my first time working in a scientific work, and my goal was to set a standard for shooting live fish, with digital technology (there were some publications from the 90’s, mainly dealing with film photography - very useless for today’s conditions).

Took me sometime to really start working. And for sure this guy was an 

inspiration:  Levon Biss.

After 4 months, the manuscript was ready, thanks by the help of some friends and collegues.

The whole thing was submited to a Zoology Journal and hope they take the bait!  =)

Here follows de abstract and the refferences:

Abstract: An updated in the fish tank photography is presented, with improved techniques, based on previous articles. A flexible system for photographing without shadows is suggested, in field and under controlled lighting situations.

A method for photographic improvement in live fish sharpness is suggested and the results discussed.


Davenport, C.J & Roop, K.L.  (2000). Teaching fish Identification with a Simple Teaching  -Photographic Tank. The American Biology Teacher, Volume 32: 202-203.

Emery, A.R. & R. Winterbotton, 1980. - A technique for

fish specimen photography in the field. Can. J. Zool., 58: 2158-2162.

Herler, J; Lipej, L. & Makovec, T. (2007). A simple technique for digital imaging of live and preserved small fish specimens., 31(1) : 39-44.

Holme,E. 1988. - Improved technique for fish specimen photography

in the field. Can. J. Zool., 67: 2330-2332.

Jenkins, R. L; Howe, W.M; Wood, L. F. (2003). Teaching field Biology with Photography. The american Biology teacher. 65: 450-454.

NOUE, L. A. Kiosh, A.i; SANTOS, N.C; MORAES, G.(2003). Clove oil as anaesthetic for juveniles of matrinxã  Brycon cephalu (Gunther, 1869). Cienc. Rural vol.33 no.5 Santa Maria Sept./Oct. 2003

Wilson EO. 1992. The Diversity of Life. Cambridge (MA), Harvard University Press.

Rinne J.N. & M.D. Jakle, 1981. - The photarium: A device for taking natural photographs of live fish. P rog. Fish-Cult., 43: 201-204.

Freshwater shrimps in the Atlantic Forest.

Shooting day!

 After a few weeks without having a proper bath in the housing, I decided to give it a go in the old Jaguareguava river, close to Bertioga, in São Vicente area, São Paulo.

 The last time I’ve been there was in October (check the post here!), and the water was in easy 27C’s.

 This time that was not the case, reaching 15C ,in some places. That’s not the recommended for a 3mm suit. Anyway, I was decided to try a new ” base layer”.. so, was ready for a few shakes.

The weather was also good, for macro shootings: lots of clounds and zero chance of meeting anyone up on the river.

The subject of the day were the shrimps, a generic term for some decapod crustaceans. Mostly known for their salty friends, they also exists in freshwater. There are many species native from Brazil, and they only live in places with hight quality water; so they might not be in danger, but they enviroinment is, for sure. 

This tiny creatures are very overlooked and most people don’t even imagine that they exist! The small ones are translucent and usually have lots of colorfull details. The bigger are usually darker and with intricate paterns.

A camaleon from the atlantic forest, Brazil.

Enyalius catenatus, is a camaleon from the atlantic forest, Brazil.
The males can change their colors from intene leaf green to almost dark brown.
Their are considered a sensible specie and depends of the conservation of the remais fragments of the atlantic forest.
This was was shoot at RPPM Serra Bonita, as part of an article for National Geographic Brazil.

Want to visit Serra Bonita?

#wildlife #lizzard #camaleon #nature #atlanticforest#brazil #tourism

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