Cyrtochilum serratum - closeup, Alambi Reserve, Ecuador
I'd like to use this post to elaborate on what has been a revelation to me during this trip: the iPhone 13 Pro.
During our travel, we capture as much wildlife as we can with the big gear. Still we sometimes find ourselves in a situation where we don't have time to properly capture a species. In those cases, I make a quick snap with the smartphone as a "better than nothing" approach.
What is new here is that the iPhone 13 Pro has a macro mode. And even cooler, it's wide angle macro. Wide angle macro lenses on normal cameras do exist, but they are obscure and extremely hard to use. The subject is practically inside the lens barrel and it's very hard to light the subject. Further, focusing is hard and getting a large depth of field a challenge.
In that sense, it kind of blows my mind that I now unexpectedly have a wide angle macro lens. It allows for perspectives I can't even do with my other macro gear. And it's stunningly easy to use, it will figure out the focusing all on its own.
Of course, it's not without limitations. It's semi-macro in the sense that it only works well on subjects at least a few cm in size. Still, I'm impressed that "better than nothing" is improving.