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longhairedgit longhairedgit
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  • Posted on: 19/4/2009 12:33
Re: I am playing with my... #51
Cheers nugget, i'm glad you like it, I wasnt sure how well a building like the cathedral would translate into an "aged" effect with the modern source lighting, but I must have got away with it.lol.

Like the chap with the konica said, I imagine rome by night must be spectacular (havent been there since I was a kid), and of course venice ust be a paradise to shoot in. I'd love to do a place like ankor tom at twilight too. Somewhere that has night markets like china, japan , malaysia, or even turkey must be good too.

Wouldnt mind a shot , though a total cliche of course, of a city with night traffic streaks, but round here its not really possible, there just isnt a vantage point on traffic with anything picturesque in sight, though I might be sad enough to get on a motorway bridge just to practise the technique. Its when doing this you really notice and begin to curse idiots who park next to monuments and of course those who allow signposts to be put up anywhere near them. Thats the trouble with modern day town planning, no respect for old buildings. Everywhere you go theres a classic tudor or victorian building, and some council muppet allowed something to be built 5 feet away with a 1960's design ethic, when clearly the original building was designed to look good with a 50 foot clear space around it, and a mini vista. Not discounting 60's potential to be design classic, erm about 30 million years from now maybe, but why mix it all up, places with a theme are better enjoyed regionally anyway and always will be, plus that way their design ethic and success is really tested.

Even very modern buildings only work well when there is a truly massive stylistic difference. A town like cheltenham for example is spectacularly pretty at 20 foot above ground level, at floor level there are hideous signposts everywhere, most of them completely pointless, and allowing companies to put down standard corporate signs on old buildings is just terrible. A full regency street 300 foot long, ruined every 5 feet by advertising that gives it that milton keynes feel. YUCK. Gloucester, bristol and Tewkesbury are the same. Gloucester has some genuinely historical parts totally ruined by neighbouring buildings from an age that produced nothing but hideous tat, the docks are a little better, at least nearby buildings are conversions or are at least sympathetic. I have to admit I have sympathy here with prince charlie and the national trust. You have old buildings that are time tested beautiful and historical, and then some muppet allows some designer of the moment to put some they believe will be a future classic (and 99% odds on bloody isnt) right next to some treasure.

Not that I want a load of national trust signposts around stuff either. Its like dude, its a castle, its 120 foot tall, made of stone, has crenellations, a drawbridge and arrow holes. I dont need a sign ten feet in front of it telling me its a bloody castle and that to go around it I need to go left or right.

Theres something nice about being off auto exposures and way off light meters. Getting back to holding a switch and having to work out exposure times, watching the counter count down and seeing what you get. It heightens the sense of anticipation and achievement. You can work for an hour and get 12 photos, whereas in daylight i'd be on 200 photos after an hour. It feels more personal.

Britian is a beautiful place, but our streets really are a mess of mindless information and hideous objects. No wonder people go on holiday to take photos. Recently got a mini commission to do some local pics for some inns and hotels, and realising just how much stuff i'm going to have to photoshop out to make the pics work contextually and compositionally. Also, the world at night is just orange.I know streetlighting is supposed to be orange for depth penetration, but our world is blue and purple at night, and now its blanket orange and you can even see the starts half the time. How irritating is that?

Whats wrong with white light? We have led's , reflectors, calibrated lens glass, glass cuts for spectrum breaking, the lot, all probably cheaper now than making those old orange jobs. We could cut down on a lot of light pollution if most lighting was downlighting anyway. That way a turtle might be able to find a beach it was born on sometime.

Lol, i'm ranting again....but nothing like photography to tell you presicely why its becoming an increasingly ugly world, and why its damn silly to pay money to live in posh areas. Everything orange and a mess, why pay for that?
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longhairedgit longhairedgit
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  • Posted on: 19/4/2009 4:50
Re: I am playing with my... #52
The nikon will no doubt be an excellent camera, but like I say, get your mitts on one before you buy, give it a good grope and take a few shots, get a sense of if its something you'd like to work with.

On subject revisiting, decided to take what i'd learned at the docks to a more challenging shoot again, the cathedral, my first efforts sucked serious butt, blurry, overexposed, useless light balance, but this time I did a bit better. Had a play with the photoshop tools too, dodges and burns and stuff just to liven things up a bit.Thye might be a bit underexposed for some tastes, but I figure, whats the point in night shooting if it looks like daylight?

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Thats (below)pretty much how the cathedral actually looked on the night, colour is accurate, lighting is good, but I got bored with the subject.
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So I decided to take on the ludicrous contrast areas, take multiple different exposures and layer and delete them together in photoshop and pick out the highlights with a colour dodge burn. Much more fun.Probably the first time I actually bothered to take shots with photoshop layering specifically in mind.

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..then got bored with that too, and started mucking about with monochromes with a few subtle colours added.

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Still not quite right, but a massive improvement over last time, especially on the clarity and exposure front. Composition was annoying the hell out of me. Couldnt get far enough away without distortion, and there were trees and cars about that really detracted from the subject. Frustrating as hell, but good practise. Have to try to get myself invited into an overlooking building at distance sometime. With this subject it would be better to be 150 feet away and about 60 feet up using telephoto instead of wide angles. I find correcting the lens curve in photoshop seriously tedious.

Next up some night sky and moon exposures, drop them in and i'll be cheating just as much as every pro photographer out there lol. Soon find out whats real and what isnt when you start getting better at this, and of course just how many pros are hypersaturing their colour in post processing.lol.
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longhairedgit longhairedgit
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  • Posted on: 18/4/2009 17:17
Re: Swimbladder problem #53
Really the metro did it?

Well that narrows it down, when combined with black tails, thats only one thing, myxosoma cerabralis. Suprised you didnt see any whirling behaviour though. Or did you? I suppose a guppy laying about could be their version of "whirling", did they lie about a lot before they died, major orientation problems?

Theres the answer, some nerk in guppy breeding is giving them infected live tubifex worms again....meh...

Simple mistake, loads of aggro to figure out. Very glad for you its all sorted though.

Bit of further reading, its described typically as a disease of salmonids, but it hits other species too. Danios seem to be a swine for it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Myxobolus_cerebralis

Its about the most convincing argument around for not using live wild collected tubifex for feeds.
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longhairedgit longhairedgit
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  • Posted on: 18/4/2009 17:03
Re: lumps on fish #54
That fish has several minor structural abnormalities,a little notchiness over the crown and dorsal, some stunted tail growth and thickening in muscle tissue, and what look to be some small localised cysts, and a patchy distrubution of body fat. Its also resting on the bottom which isnt really normal for a comet type goldfish, and may denote exhaustion and metabolic drain, possibly from pathogen or parasitic activity.

Looks like your fish has picked up an infection, though because the symptoms are general rather than pronounced by location , I'm having trouble picking a root cause of problem. Could be mycobacterium, could be hexamitiasis, could be long term nutrient uptake problems, maybe even some minor tumours( note tumour doesnt always mean cancer).

Ruling out the latter might help narrow it down, what volume is the tank, what model is the filter, what are the water stats for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and ph, what are the average temps, and what types of food does the fish eat regularly?

TBH though, he is sufferring from something, and i'll bet its onset has been slow. It might be worth him going to a vet for small biopsy on one of those lumps for the purposes of disease identification. I think the smart money here is on a mycobacterium, but a biopsy test would be conclusive. You'd have a hell of a time guessing the way to go on this one, you'd need whatever pathogen it is conclusively identified by sample testing.

I sincerely doubt melafix would have any impact on this, whatever the infection is, it looks systemic and melafix wouldnt be strong enough or systemic enough to help. Whatever is hitting this fish is subdermal, its mooching around in the fat and muscle layers, surface treatments wont help, theyll never get to the root of infection. It will come down to POMV regulated meds, antibiotics or antiprotozoans depending on the disease ID, stuff like metronidazole or cirpofloaxin. Unless you live outside the UK you'll need a vet for this one.
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longhairedgit longhairedgit
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  • Posted on: 17/4/2009 19:04
Re: Dead flish #55
The reactivity meds have on mature aquaria are not always known, because its imperically almost impossible without being a microbiologist to know the exact bacterial make-up of your aquarium.

Some of the bacteria in a tank to do with the decompositional cycle are actually opportunistic pathogens,which when allowed to proliferate can cause disease issues, and often a weaker or deformed fish may have a lower than average natural resistance to those strains even when they are at a perfectly natural level,(probably the situation with your fish) and some meds are targeted at those, so a med usually does have at least some effect on a tanks decompositional balance , sometimes its positive killing harmful strains and leaving beneficial ones with the tanks cycle unaffected, and sometimes negative by killing large amounts of substrate and filter bacteria leading to ammonia and nitrite spikes, and very occassionally, rocketing nitrate, and ph fluctuations.

Nearly all however affect gaseous balance to some degree, some by binding oxygen, other by dropping the fishs ability to absorb oxygen, and other hike co2 levels by affecting bacterial balance, and this can lead to sulphide releases or co2 hikes. In short there is an associated risk to using meds because they cause environmental fluctuations, which depending on species present may affect the fishs health negatively, so you have to be sure using them is warranted.

Bacterial cultures in-tank are rarely uniform, with several hundred strains of fungi and bacteria in colonies of millions, even trillions, all fighting for dominance and balance vs substrate type, nutrient type, temperature, and gas and flow balance. Its a hugely complicated set of variables, some of which can be "moderated" or "regulated" a little by carefully structuring decor and equipment, with the least problems tending to occur in well oxygenated aquaria with good flow where the substrate is very clean.

Swampy, deep substrate, or stillwater tanks often have the most pronounced reaction to meds because they are more dependant on anaerobic bacterial colonies than aerobic ones. Aerobic bacteria play a bigger role in filtration (the nitrogen cycle), anaerobic ones play a bigger role in decomposition.

High ph tanks tend to have higher gas and ammonia toxicity reactivities when gas balances and bacterial cultures change lower ph is usually less reactive but there is perhaps more likelihood of organic detritus and colonial complexity. There a logarythm to consider. Deep amazon aquaria or swamp aquaria get problems, extremely hard malawi aquaria can get problems, treatment with meds usually has the least impact in the ph and water condition midranges.Below PH 6.5 and above 8 is where reactions tend to be more pronounced. In low ph setups with higher protien and acid content there are usually higher bacterial densities in the decompositional range and more likelihood of suffocation , in high ph the bacterial cultures and flow tend to dictate things are more aerobic and the risk is the harder hitting ammonia and nitrite spikes. High oxygenation though, helps under almost all circumstances in supporting the fish and some of the beneficial colonies.

I suppose the ultimate nightmare place to treat fish would be in a detritus filled pond with high ph, it compounds both problems of toxic gases because its very anaerobic bacteria dependant, and the high ph also ensures the ammonia toxicity is high if the cycle is affected. Close second is the low ph almost zero flow poorly oxygenated betta tank, and lastly the over ph 8 rift tank or marine tank where toxicity is magnified.

Midranges with balances that are broad and safe are nearly always the least risky, and thats say amazon with overfiltering and good cleanliness, the average midrange ph 7 tank with average values and a varied split on colonial density and type, or the overfiltered understocked rift aquarium of smack on 8 and no more. Goldfish and temperates when kept roomy also typically do ok under treatment, but again being understocked is a distinct advantage.

Its under med protocols you really notice of you have your flow, ph, oxygenation, cleanliness and filtration levels at optimum. Rarely does a well balanced tank crash out unless its overmedicated or given a med so potent and broad spectrum that most of the in-tank bacteria are killed.

In short, always expect some reaction, but the degree of reaction you get is variable according to tank and equipment design and maintenance regime.Broadly speaking, its the environmental control and maintenance regime you have that helps medications and dosing go safetly, so if a tank has gone a bit grubby or the stats a bit crasy and you have a sick fish, go into cleanup mode beforem you add meds to the tank, but be reasonable about it , and try to get it done fairly quickly, obviously once a fish is infected, your on the clock to get it treated before the point of no return is reached. Try to get that sort of work done all in the same day.

If theres ever a reaction where the fish appear to be suffocating, change a lot of the water to get the gas and ammonia toxicity down, oxygenate like crazy and clean up a lot before running with the meds again.
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longhairedgit longhairedgit
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  • Posted on: 17/4/2009 9:15
Re: SFF Biotope tank - update #56
Small noticeable ovipositor on most of the females,(shows more easily or in the mood females or ones that have eaten a lot, it everts sometimes) males are a little longer in the body on average, and the skull only really shows a difference in very mature specimens where the males is a little heavier and sometimes the scales seem a bit thicker, but you'd need a very good macro or magnifying glass to spot that. Males have a slightly bigger flap when flaring and it doesnt fod up quite a compactly, but again youd need a mature specimen to spot that.

Sexing young bettas is always hell cos the sexual characteristics are often only pronounced after being over a year old. By then theyre usually bubblenesting anyway so its no mystery. Best chance is with bumchecks lol.
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longhairedgit longhairedgit
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  • Posted on: 16/4/2009 21:44
Re: I am playing with my... #57
Cheers nugget, I like that one too, though the first one does it for me the most. That little cable is also helping with the macros, enabling me to do stuff at a new level of clarity with better control. Im also really starting to make best use iof the integrated flash, and its helping me make better shots than I could before. I'm also using the liveview focus zoom to check for focal range on tiny subjects, and its helping.


light and focus are better here than before.
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...and these few indoor exercises to get used to the flash were to serve me outdoors later. Im relating flash angle and power to depth of field and ambient light a little better now, the result being better texture and clarity with more subtle colour. The result of this is a better perception of the elemental qualities of the object im trying to photograph.

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Then outdoors to increase stillness and clarity. The idea being the juxtaposition of texture in the same shot.

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Then going tripod free with flash for compensation starting with ever increasing amounts of movement....

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....Which finally enabled me to get a shot I've been after for years, a hoverfly in flight.

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Not the clearest because its not a true macro lens, but it'll do for me.

A dragonfly in flight, it is my destiny..
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longhairedgit longhairedgit
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  • Posted on: 16/4/2009 20:57
Re: New Fish Feeder Idea - Feedback Please :D #58
Sounds like a really cool idea to me. I really rather like the thought of being able to log in just trigger an autofeeder. Get it rigged up with a webcan and you could even check on how your fish are feeding, and watch it live from your laptop while on holiday. Imagine the future, design a plumbed in water repository with a flush system and drainage,and a water conditioner dispenser, also automated. You could even do water changes at the flick of a button. All remote operated. No more need for having people watch your fish or overfeeding them, or starve periods while your away. Electronic water stat monitors so you can take and log readings too.....Mmmmmmmm.

No reason not to take those one month holidays around the world. Sweet

well, as long as people dont hack it.
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longhairedgit longhairedgit
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  • Posted on: 16/4/2009 20:45
Re: HELP!!! #59
Yeah don't dally on the whitespot treatment , its extremely important to catch whitespot early before its reproduction increases and it starts to kill fish. If worried just do a major water change to drop the levels of the other products still in the water a little before you go for the organic dye treatments. Just let the water conditioners settle out for a couple of hours before you put the meds in to avoid major reactivity issues, and make sure you gravel cleaned recently.
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longhairedgit longhairedgit
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  • Posted on: 16/4/2009 20:42
Re: Dead flish #60
Could be disease, but it sounds more like he had a developmental problem, perhaps even a nutritional one, in short he was disadvantaged when it comes to survival, and such fish are often the first to fail, but that doesnt necessarily mean the other fish will get sick. Generally its a good idea to avoid any fish carrying signs of deformity, both for the personal survivability potential of that particular fish, and of course just in case they are a carrier of something nasty.

Some diseases such as mycobacteria do cause fin and spine deformity, and they are dangerous in aquaria, but equally not all fish are born healthy and not all are destined to survive. For now I would just keep an eye for further symptoms in any of the other fish, and let us know if any of the others show any signs of poor health. I would also get the meds out in fairly short order,the cause of illness and death was never really established and antibacterial meds can cause tank crashes and periods of rough water quality. Its probably already served as a bacterial knockdown, and now its worth water changing it out.

Hows the water stats now the treatment has been put in?
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