The following is another extract from Weta - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Weta have survived virtually unchanged since the Mesozoic era, possibly because they had few native predators. In this respect, they can be compared with the tuatara. Fossilized weta have been found in Australia, although they do not exist there now. This proves they were present in ancient Gondwanaland, prior to the separation of New Zealand from that ancient landmass.
Giant, tree, ground and tusked weta are all members of the family Anostostomatidae (traditionally in the Stenopelmatidae, but recently separated). Cave weta are members of the family Rhaphidophoridae, in a different Ensiferan superfamily.
About a tenth of the species of weta belong to the giant weta (Deinacrida heteracantha) group, most of which are significantly larger than other weta, despite already being large by insect standards. A giant weta can have a body length in excess of 8 centimetres (3 in) not inclusive of its lengthy legs and antennae, and weigh more than 70 grams (2.5 oz), making it the heaviest documented insect in the world and heavier than a sparrow. The largest species of giant weta is the Little Barrier Island weta also known as the wetapunga (god of ugly things). Giant weta tend to be less social and more passive than other weta. They are classified in the genus Deinacrida, which is Greek for terrible grasshopper. They are found primarily on small islands off the coast of the main islands.
I found this weta, a female, in the milking shed one morning where it was crawling around the floor – always towards me, no matter where I was. This particular one is about 6cm in length. Knowing that they’re capable of inflicting a painful bight but not wanting to harm it, I placed it in a sink in another part of the shed with plans to release it and photograph it. This is one of those pics.
Alterations to this image include partial rotation, cropping, and slight increases to both brightness and contrast.
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bakes888 (18499) 2006-05-22 6:30
Nice shot. Good and sharp. I have not managed to find any of these in my woodshed yet.
Perhaps a little more room in front and a little less behind the weta might balance the image a little.
TFS Cheers Paul.
Janice (4403) 2006-05-22 6:41
Ok, she looks harmless, but we know better, don't we Tony!! I still feel dread when I see a live one. Fortunately there aren't too many around here now.
Good image of the Weta, showing her from the side angle. Well done,
s10001in (0) 2006-05-22 22:32
Nice clean image with high DOF.
It is still bit out fouse as I can understand that object is always moving.
Very well done tony.
Thanks for sharing.
efigesta (12188) 2006-05-24 4:53
Great macro, with nice colors and great pov
bazal (7900) 2006-05-25 18:31
Another very interesting document dealing with these fascinating insects. It looks certainly ugly for some people, but I think your contribution is an example of respect for wildlife (and especially for species that wouldn't be easy to consider as lovely puppies)... Many thanks for sharing.
capthaddock (28790) 2006-07-02 19:55
Hi Tony - what a monster, the focus is right on, with good details on the beast, and the blurred bg adds a sense of depth, being picky, the wooden beam does not have enough colour contrast with the weta, the visual impact would be better if she was walking on a light coloured object, of course this would also make her more vulnerable to predators, and the little lady knows better than that :-)