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Ever wondered what goes into preparing insect photographs for Bug of the Week?

Let's see.

First you need to find an insect, like this bug on a hollyhock leaf. See it?

Let's get closer. Do you see it now?

To give you scale, the leaf is about 3 1/2 inches across.

Here's my first glimpse in macro view through the camera lens.

Because the insect is sitting at a weird angle, I have to maneuver to get a fuller shot before it scoots away.

Now I can see what it is more clearly. This is how the raw photograph looked before cropping.

Finally, I cropped it to give you a bug's eye view.

Isn't it amazing what the camera lens reveals?

2

It's that time to reflect on the past year by choosing some of our favorite insect photographs.

Seems like most of our favorite photos told a story. For example, the bee visiting a flower was in danger. Can you see why?

That brown bit in the upper right side is a jumping spider looking for prey. The bee did manage to get away.

Another fun story was a friend sharing some silkworm larvae.

We watched them grow,

spin cocoons,

and emerge as adult moths. The experience inspired another story in the form of a children's book. We'll see what happens to that in 2018.

We loved watching these wood ants tend to their herd of aster hoppers. (See more at Wild About Ants).

Let's not forget this Asian multicolored lady beetle, which reminds us lady beetles eat pollen as well as aphids.

We followed a grasshopper in a sunflower.

Then we discovered an adult queen butterfly next to a monarch butterfly caterpillar.

We wish to thank all our friends and family who took these journeys with us and helped make the stories happen. You're the best!