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Picture of the Month

Bird's Nest Fungus - Crucibulum laeve

This is a picture of various life stages of the Bird's Nest fungus, Crucibulum laeve, which is commonly found on mulch all over the Cornell campus. The cups are quite small, approximately 5 mm across, which makes an oblique view like this very difficult to obtain with sufficient depth of field. To solve this problem, I took 25 images of the fungal cluster (see Compositing Images to Increase Depth of Field in Photomacrography) at slightly different focal depths. Instead of compositing the images manually though, I used a fantastic software called Helicon Focus Pro to do the compositing automatically. I would recommend that anyone doing serious macro or micro photography should try out this software and make it a part of your workflow. Click here to see a Zoomify version of the fungus in which you can view the image at it's full resolution.




Kent Loeffler, Cornell University
© Cornell University, Dept. of Plant Pathology, 2004