Antlion larva - closeup, Milpe Bird Sanctuary, Ecuador
Our stay in Milpe was to be short, we arrived just before lunch and would leave the following morning. So it was a bummer that heavy rain ruined our birding plan for the afternoon.
Luckily, our guide Manuel Espejo always manages to come up with a cool side project. We noticed a lot of sand pit traps on the floor, looking like this:
At the bottom of these traps are the notorious larvae of an antlion, which will prey on any arthropod (typically ants) falling into the trap. Manuel managed to digg up one of these larvae.
These are 2:1 macro photos with 2 off-camera flash units. The subject is alive and was put back where it came from.
As adults, antlions are not often photographed. This is due to their short adult life spans and flight time, which surrounds daylight. They are commonly mistaken for dragonflies but they are easy to tell apart by having long antennae:
No species identified
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