Monday in Nature POTW

Discussion in 'Nature' started by lgw, May 27, 2013.

  1. Good Morning. It's Monday in Nature and the first day for a POTW in this forum. This is a way to bring nature photographers of all camera makes together. It's also a place where we can see the different styles and subjects from underwater to sky and all that is in between in the natural world. I'll start the thread Monday mornings at 6 AM, EST. Let's see how this idea develops. We'll set up parameters as we go. The usual 700 pixels on the long axis applies.
    The opening shot was taken at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary. Eastern Red Spotted Newts are in their juvenile "eft" stage. It was chilly that morning and we were all moving a bit slow. There are many of these in easy view along trails at the sanctuary.
    What has nature presented to you lately?
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  2. Laura, nice idea.
    Here is a jackdaw which came and landed on a wall where I was sitiing recently. Not a brilliant shot but it is nice when nature comes along and sits down next to you.
    Canon 5DII + 70-300 L lens
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  3. I'll start with a macro shot of the seed pods of Bedstraw (Galium).
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  4. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    Great idea Laura.
    Are you intentions to put in a one photo limit/week?
    I may not be strictly adhering to your pixel limit (I'll be more careful next time). I have the same image over with my Pentax folks, but it's always nice to be around a nature-focused bunch of folks.
    Yellow Billed Cuckoo, Eagle Creek Park, Indianapolis, IN USA
    Pentax K5 iis, 600mm A f5.6 at f8 (this is a manual focus lens), JPEG ISO 800. Image is cropped.
    [​IMG]
     
  5. Hi Doug,
    As far as a limit on numbers per week, I'm posting one. Other forums like Nikon and Canon have gone to 3. Let's see how much participation we get. The idea is fluid at this point. The 700 pixels is in place for other forums, so it's there for the sake of consistency. It may take a bit for folks to notice this POTW, but the ball is rolling. So far, so good. I'm appreciative of all who like the idea and want to help move it forward.
     
  6. African standoff - Gaboon Viper left, Green Mamba right. (Captives)
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  7. Good idea Laura, like the snakes Mark, hope to be able to join in next week (still in a sling from my 2nd arm surgery) what the heck will throw in an old shot
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  8. Nice idea Laura. These have got to be pink lady slippers although they look different than most I've seen pictures of. If not, these should take the pink lady slippers name and the others should be named something else.
    I shot these last week on the trail to Wiseman's View which overlooks the Linville gorge in western North Carolina.
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  9. Nice idea, Laura! And lovely shots, all. It's great to see what other people are seeing (and "capturing").
    I've started a project, which I will turn into a book, of photographing a certain spot I pass every morning on the way to work. Here is one of the regular visitors, a male Hooded Oriole, who perched on a saguaro last week.
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  10. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    Laura,

    As much as I see a lot of adult Eastern Newts, I've never seen a the Red Eft land form, so I'm jealous (I'm kind of a salamander fanatic).
    (I give enough praise to Robert over in Pentax; it would become gratuitous to do the same over here)
    Great subject/lighting Rick.
    Don, I don't think what you have there is a Lady's Slipper, although I'm not quite sure what you have. Lady Slipper's are monocots and you can tell from the branching veins on the leaves (if those are the leaves with that flower) that the leaves are to a dicot (sorry, I'm an annoying Biology-prof). I bet a visit to Robert's site (ak Orchid expert) will confirm that.
    Great shot Mark. Even I know one place where I wouldn't stick my finger!
     
  11. Good Morning Laura,
    It's wonderful that you have brought your POTW idea to fruition, and even more so that it's already attracted so many lovely and interesting photos. It's going to be so interesting, I think, to see aspects of nature in others' work that one would not ordinarily see in one's own neck of the woods. My shot for the week is an extremely lucky one in that I had to get into a awkward position to capture it, wasn't carrying my tripod, and it was waving crazily in a breeze that slackened only for an instant.
    D7000, 16-85mm @ 85; 1/200 @ f/8, ISO 1000 -- 100% crop
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  12. Gup

    Gup Gup

    Here is a shot of the 'elusive' Indian Pipe, a plant lacking chlorophyll. It is often involved in a form of ménage a trois , gaining its nutrition from a fungus that is in turn in a relationship with a host plant.
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  13. Thank you for starting this forum, Laura. I'm looking forward to this one a lot.
    Shot yesterday at Reifel Wildfowl Sanctuary in Delta, BC. This house sparrow clearly was proud of its catch (I think it was some kind of fishfly, but not sure), and it posed for a while.
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  14. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Thanks again to Laura for getting these threads started.
    The 700-pixel limit is photo.net site wide, not specific to this forum. Strictly speaking, nature photography means there should not be any signs of human activities in the image. Therefore, subjects such as lighthouses, bridges, etc. are off limits. However, at least initially we are not going to strictly enforce any rules, but please post nature-related images and avoid anything that can be considred as "bad taste." After a little while, we'll set rules such as how many images are allowed, etc. In other words, if you post a second image to the same thread, chance is that we are not going to delete it at this point. In fact, we would like to encourage more participation, but please don't post like 5 similar images to dominate the thread.

    [​IMG]
    Avocet in Flight, Nikon D7100 with 600mm/f4 lens
     
  15. Hello Shun and Laura,
    I'd like to better understand the idea that photos submitted to this forum should not show any signs of human activities, therefore no lighthouses, etc. And this is not an unreasonable position. But what about the photo Colin submitted this morning? It seems perfectly acceptable to me although the bird is perched on a man-made wall. And yesterday (I live far out in the country, entirely off the grid, and there are many wild creatures here) two adorable baby skunks turned up feeding next to our emergency generator. I was very excited and took several shots before they hid under the wood shed. All of the pictures I took of them, however, show the generator, certainly a man-made item, in such a way that it can't be cropped out. Yet, as Colin observed, sometimes nature presents herself in unexpected ways. So a little flexibility may be in order; probably something that can be worked out over time. Thank you.
    Jim Butler, aka Young James
     
  16. Canon S95 from the Shedd Aquarium- Chicago
    Nice thread.
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  17. Nice idea.
    Other people get birds on the wing, I get squirrels taking off..
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  18. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    As I said, let this thread run for a few weeks and then gauge how everybody feels. As long as the theme is mostly nature photography, I don't think we'll pick on one overhead powerline in the frame, etc.
    The Nikon Wednesday thread started in 2008. In about 5 years, I have deleted a grand total of 2 images plus sent one warning. In all of those cases, the images in question involved nudity or other "family unfriendly" content. I really doubt that we'll run into similar situations on this forum. As long as we all use some common sense, hopefully we'll never need to delete any posts.
     
  19. Monday and nature, nice idea. My daughter alerted me to some local nature just yesterday, so I get to share it fresh with everyone here...
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  20. Blueberry barrens in Fall, Cherryfield, ME. Gup, the intensely colorful blueberries are, remarkably, a distant relative of your ghostly Indian Pipe.
    Fuji Velvia, don't remember the camera.
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  21. Well, we've been out in a bog for much of the day. What fascinating little places they are. We came back to all of these wonderful contributions to the opening week. It is heartening to see so many familiar names and encouraging to hear your support for the thread. Special thanks to the Nature moderators for their support of the idea.
    Jim, the "strictly speaking" definition of nature photography was new to me, but as Shun has said, lets see how things go. Within the posts here there are captive animals and man made structures used as perches. In every forum I am familiar with, photos of captive animals should be declared as such, which these are. A zoo is certainly man made, but the snakes and the eel are menacing and beautiful. Sometimes definitions can help us filter ideas. Sometimes they can be an extreme end of a spectrum. We want to encourage participation, not stifle it. If nature moved into my shed, I'd certainly want to get a camera. Then I'd want to be thoughtful about how I portray the meeting, especially skunks;-) Common sense is a wonderful guide. And, here, we can provide an explanation, as in the case with your skunks.
    Colin, I'm not familiar with the bird, but it's a beauty.
    Doug, another bird I'm not familiar with. It's pretty against all that green. I admit I had a good session with 2 efts that day, hard to imagine that you've not seen them.
    Rick not only provided a nice shot, but encouragement in person.
    Mark K., amazing.
    Robert, nice Showy Orchis, a favorite up here in the spring. Good luck with round 2 and please, keep posting till you have new material.
    Don, pretty pink, but I agree with Doug, not a Lady Slipper. It looks to be in the pea family, or at least "pea lookalikes". A Lady Slipper comes up singly on an erect stem. These are much smaller and pendant. It's pretty though with nice details. Maybe together we can get it figured out.
    Noreen, your project sounds great, and a nice shot of the Oriole. Look forward to seeing more.
    Jim, now I see, that's really is nice. Oh, that breeze. Thanks for your part in all of this.
    Gup, nice Monotropa. They are always fun to see in the woods.
    David, well, not my "forum", but the idea for the thread was many steps in the making. Like your sparrow, it was an idea worth hanging onto.
    Shun, beautiful Avocet. I've never had to chance to photograph them, but someday. I think we're off to a good start.
    Louis, those eyes!
    JDM, what's a nature thread without a squirrel? You and "the hammer" nailed him.
     
  22. Patrick, she has a good eye.
    Edwin, amazing color, I'll bet the blueberries are good too.
     
  23. Laura and Shun,
    Well spake both of you! Of course a little discretion is never a bad thing, and I think we all know how to use it. I suppose I spent too much time musing on what was natural and what was not. I'm inclined to think that everything is natural, but I think the idea here is to minimize the human presence. But, then, are we not natural creatures? Good wishes to you both.
    Jim
     
  24. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    This has been a lot of fun.
    I'll have to start enforcing the 700 rule over in Pentax (we haven't been doing it). We (Pentax) originated the POTW but the moderator over there is clueless about standards across the other forums ;) (yes, it's me)
    Laura some populations tend to have the Eft stage, others do not. In better than 20 years of being in the proper habitat I have yet to see one. Unfortunately where I have lived they are pretty rare.
    Noreen, I've gotta move to your neighborhood! Lovely image.
    Regarding the issue with human structure, etc in photographs North American photography nature saloon rules are generally very strict about this point, absolutely no obvious 'hand of man'. European rules tend to be much more forgiving regarding 'hand of man rule' so for instance the famous annual 'Wildlife Photographer of the Year' sponsored by the Natural History Museum in London generally has many images with 'hand of man' in them. I have no idea what the rules are like in other parts of the world. Personally I try to follow North American standards myself, but I sympathize with other areas using other standards. I suspect lines with seasoned photographers will match their region. After many years here on photo.net where I tried to suggest the North American standards I have found several photographers become defensive if you you point out the 'hand of man' rule. Ergo I have been pretty cautious suggesting those rules to members in the Nature Gallery.
     
  25. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Again, as far as I am concerned, the purpose for this thread is to promote nature photography and have some fun. It is not my objective, and I am sure it is not Bob Atkins' either, to tightly police every entry. As long as we use common sense, anything reasonable is fine. If we can see some out-of-focus house in the background, it is not going to be an issue. However, I hope people won't post an image of their dog on a leash waking in the park ...
     
  26. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    Good point Shun
     
  27. I love nature photos! Great idea. Here is a Red-winged blackbird.
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  28. Today is tuesday but I hope I'm not to late. Unfortunatelly I did not read this thread yesterday so I hope you will like this photo. Made with 400mm f/3.5 and extension tube.
    Regards, Miha.
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  29. Douglas and Laura, thanks for the feedback. Whatever it is that I shot did not look like the pictures I've seen of pink lady slippers. I have done some searching but have not been able to identify it yet. I am of the photograph first, identify later school with most birds and wildflowers at this point.
     
  30. Phil, beautiful, as your avian shots always are. Glad you found us.
    Miha, the thread is new, so don't worry about getting here late. That is gorgeous green.
    Don, I have a suggestion. You mentioned that you had cropped the shot. Perhaps post the cropped and uncropped versions in a new thread, ie. "help ID this flower". Then we can see more of the plant. Half of IDing a flower is examining the rest of the plant.
     
  31. kts

    kts

    nice idea with this thread Laura...something to look foward to on Monday
    this is a shot of a green heron in her nest with a couple eggs....gonna go back over there today with an extender and tripod and see if i can't get a better capture
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  32. Hi Thom, thanks for joining in. Good luck with the extender. I'd want to spend more time with her also.
     
  33. What a marvelous idea Laura, thank you . Also, thank you Jim for bringing this thread to my attention.
    Great shots everyone. I am going to look forward to this now :)
    My contribution this week is a female red winged black bird.
    I hope you enjoy !
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  34. Bear cub taken in Cades Cove, TN the first of May this year. Nikon D300 with Nikon 70-200mm f2.8 lens
    [​IMG]
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  35. Found this hawk near my house in Austin, Texas.
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  36. Roberta, I am a huge fan of your macro work. And beautiful birds also. I'm glad you came to visit and plan to do so in the future.
    Bill, nice action on the hawk.
    Wayne, can you re-size from 712 to 700 and re-post?
    Thanks to Jim for announcing this thread over in Nikon Wednesday. That was really nice of you.
     
  37. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    I sort of fixed Wayne Wrights' image. Please keep in mind to keep the long dimension to within 700 pixels. That is a photo.net site-wide requirement, not specific to any forum.
     
  38. Great thread idea. I'll be looking forward to Mondays. I only just found the thread, so here's my, late, contribution for this week:
    Coyote snake-toss
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  39. It's not easy to wrangle these two characters :>)....and as aggressive as the spider was....it was intimidated at the same. Some of the flies just ignored this brownie and would land dangerously close.
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  40. [​IMG]
    Nikon D300+200-400 VRII
     
  41. My complements to all of the contributors...especially the two snakes head-to-head and the coyote tossing the snake...wonderful all!
    At the risk of being out of any parameters, I would like to contribute this cheetah at the National Zoo in Washington, DC. I was up at dawn to photograph the moon rising over the Washington monuments, but the cloud cover blocked the shots.
    Shooting up to the zoo, I was the only person watching this cheetah who was up at dawn walking his turf. After a few passes, he sat about 30 feet in front me and posed. What a magnificent animal.
    Nikon 7000 with Nikon 18-200 lens
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  42. Congratulations on getting this thread going Laura. I heard about it from the photo.net newsletter, so hopefully that will get plenty of interested photographers to stop by. As for me, nature photography is something I am quite new to, and was planning to get more practice in, so hopefully this thread will be an excellent source of inspiration and discussion. The latter was one of my favourite aspects of the old POTW thread that used to grace photo.net's frontpage, so perhaps this will serve as a substitute. There's some wonderful photos here already (I love Roberta Davidson's photo of a red winged blackbird on a sunflower in particular).
    As I said, I'm quite a beginner to nature photography, and perhaps some of the rules and ethical points will be lost on me. I note the previous discussion on the "touch of man"; it's not something I was particularly aware of, and something I will take note of in future. I also recall reading the story of Jose Luis Rodriguez's use of a tame wolf in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year award a few years back! I have quite a few photographs of e.g. butterflies at butterfly farms and trained eagles in hawking. I may post some of these if I've not had a chance to get into the wilderness (there's precious little of that in the Midlands), but will always do so with full disclosure.
    Anyway, to make a first submission, this photo is not one of my all time favourites, but is my most recent nature photo; taken 4 days ago during the glorious bank holiday weekend at Bradgate Park near Leicester in the UK. Perhaps it's more landscape than a nature photograph, but it's certainly all natural! Taken at 35mm f/8 using a Canon 5Diii and 24-105 f/4 L IS.
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  43. Shun, thank-you for resizing Wayne's pensive looking, but cute bear cub.
    David, wonderful series over in Canon Thurs with the snake toss. That must have been great to watch.
    Leszek, that is quite the stand-off.
    Wes, I really miss seeing Yellow- headed Blackbirds as we don't have them here. Thanks for sharing a nice shot.
    H G, what a look. What a moment you must have had.
    Siegfried, ahhhhhhhhh, that's special. Any day is made brighter by an artfully shot Sarcosypha occidentalis.
    Mark, I like the starkness. Sometimes nature is like that. The Nature forum is frequented by folks who can probably answer questions you might have as a budding nature photographer. There will no doubt be discussion here. At times discussions started here may be better answered in a unique thread, as with Don's flower shot.
    As has been mentioned, some of the parameters will be sorted out. Many contributions are captive animals and we'll benefit from learning about these distinctions. How do rehab avian educators, or special exhibit butterflies fit into the spectrum from natural to not? Honestly, I'm not sure, but I'm going to think more about it. Perhaps that is a unique thread subject. Common sense is the guiding light for now. We are off to an incredible start. I'm encouraged by the general consensus that this thread is a good idea. Looks like many will look forward to Mondays.
     
  44. What a great idea Laura..
    There are many ways to travel, but hitchiking on the beak of a hummingbird has to be unique :)
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  45. Thanks Laura for giving me an ID on the species of mushroom. They pop up everywhere in the forest here once the rainy season has been going for a few weeks. It's hard to capture the almost neon color that they have but that particular image comes pretty close.
     
  46. Again, my complements to all of the contributors. Took me a few minutes to appreciate the hitchhiker on the hummingbird.
    Here is another portrait - this emu is one nasty looking bird.
    Nikon D300 Nikon 18-200 VR
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  47. I just found this. Great idea Laura, thanks!
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  48. [​IMG]
    Laura, thank you for making the suggestion and taking the lead on this one!
    Might get us out into the open spaces a little more often!
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  49. Several of you have mentioned my snake standoff. Thanks for your kind comments. The mamba eventually began to flick its tongue directly in contact with the snout of the viper; apparently a greeting, of sorts. The viper raised its head a bit, and the mamba crawled beneath and then up and over the back of the viper. It seemed like a very peaceful passing. I'm sure they must have some mutual respect for each other's poisons.
    Incidentally, the Gaboon Viper has the longest fangs of any snake. They have been known to be more than 2 inches in length. And unlike many other poisonous snakes, these guys don't let go after they bite, thereby ensuring the victim gets its share of venom. Beautifully marked snakes but very deadly.
     
  50. Thanks for starting this. My 2 cents:
    [​IMG]
     
  51. Just getting around to opening the current newsletter and found this link, which I can already tell is one more place I'll be returning to on a regular basis, on time in the future however! Thanks for adding to the enjoyment of the site Laura.
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  52. Thank you Laura for taking the lead on this idea and implementing it. It's one of those ideas that one thinks: "Now why didn't I think of that?"
    Now I have something to really look forward to on a Monday. Here's my contribution, taken in January of this year at Ding Darling NWR.
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  53. Jon Eckman - an amazing photo - the bee's colors really pop with the white flower background. And, handling the focus in that macro shot is just super.
    HG Miller
     
  54. Haig, it's been awhile. Simply beautiful.
    Robert C., glad you found us. I thought you might. Good to see you got to the Columbines as I blew the chance.
    Kim, no problem. Thanks you for sharing such a striking bird.
    Jan, that ones got an eye on you.
    Dennis, pleasant surprise, it's been a long time......no problem. Your Cormorant is breath taking.
    I think everyone here has thought of this in some way at some time. We're all out, in nature, doing what we do in our own unique way. Weather folks find out about this place in the newsletter, in another forum, by word of whatever, signal flags, or simply stumbling in, we're all here for the similar reasons.
     
  55. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    I keep coming back and keep seeing more and more spectacular work here. Working backwards.
    Dennis, do Cormorants really have eyes that intense Green? Wow! I need to pay them more attention.
    Jon- very sublime flower bee shot.
    Robert-great Columbine, I especially like the background.
    Haig-fantastic hummingbird. Did you use a dual flash system to get it?
    Stiegfred-love the depth of field in your shot, works wonders.
    Roberta- I like the play of you female RRBB and the sunflower. I almost always ignore the female RRBB for the males, it looks like I need a better eye.
    David-your shot there is a once in a lifetime. Great catch and so well exposed!
    Miha-lovely fog closeup (I have a thing for frogs and amphibians in general, ever since a Houston Toad possibly saved my life, but that's another story)
    There are certainly more here, but I got to get back to cleaning the house.
     
  56. Well I'm a little late to the party, as usual. Lovely photos all around in this thread. I'll add one of my own from a while back.
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  57. @ Douglas Stemke, it was a set up with 4 flashes. Thanks Doug and Laura. This was a brilliant idea!
     
  58. Doug: Yes, the eyes are that bright aquamarine color. I often thought that their eyes seem to be adapted especially to vision underwater, because they are so incredibly adept at chasing down fast-moving fish.
    But, it turns out, that isn't the case (see this research article) and according to the article, their underwater vision is comparable to an unaided human's eyes, and they can detect prey only at close range, less than 1 meter. Interestingly, the inside of their mouths are bright blue, which isn't often seen.
     
  59. stemked

    stemked Moderator

    Miha, obviosly I meant 'frog' closeup. Sorry about that.
    Thanks for the information Dennis.
     
  60. [​IMG]
    True love at the gannetry

    Gannets - like these at the gannetry at Bempton in East Yorkshire, England (the largest mainland gannetry in the UK) - mate for life, and really work at it, indulging in this pair-bonding behaviour whenever either bird arrives at or (like the bird on the right) is about to leave the nest.
    I'm not one to anthropomorphise, but they really do give the impression that they're delighted to see each other.
    Canon 7D, Sigma 120-300mm f/2.8 OS and 1.4x TC, handheld at 420mm.
    As an aside: wishful thinking, but I wish the forum could accept and present images bigger than 700px - this (and, I imagine, many other images in the thread) loses a lot from being viewed at postage-stamp size.
     
  61. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Since it is Sunday, it is time to close this discussion. See you again on a new Nature Monday thread tomorrow.
     

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