leopard slugs mating
Leopard slugs mating

Animal Behaviour


Understanding the behavioural features of wildlife subjects is key to photographing them. Knowing how an animal will behave allows you to identify the unusual, predict the unexpected, and to know just how much your own presence affects the subject. Some animals will ignore a human presence, others will take flight (often literally) at even a distant approach, or the slightest movement or sound.

Insects, for example, can be variable. With dragonflies the common darters will tend to allow a very close approach and, even if disturbed, will soon settle back in their original location. They make excellent macro subjects. Chasers are much more difficult, but the female chaser hovers when egg-laying and provides outstanding opportunities for flight images. Some butterflies almost never settle in the open (marbled whites), while others are more placid and will tolerate a close approach (painted ladies).

The galleries linked to this section show some of the more unusual aspects of animal life.


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