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Photographer has his photo on display at museum

Museum photo

Oshawa photographer Leigh Ayres was one of several winners in a recent Canadian Geographic contest that will see his photo of a resting cuckoo bee on display at the Canadian Museum of Nature in Ottawa.

By Graeme McNaughton/The Oshawa Express

It was an early summer morning at the cottage last year when Leigh Ayres took the photo that can now be seen in an Ottawa museum.

“One of the things I like to shoot is macro photography and insects and things like that…so, I know these little critters tend to be a little less active either in the evening or early in the morning, so I got up early to see if I could find some of these guys sitting around. When the sun comes up, they tend to get more active and fly,” the Oshawa photographer said.

Ayres’ eventually found what he was looking for: a cuckoo bee seemingly taking a nap while holding on to a blade of grass.

That photo has since been published in Canadian Geographic and will be on display at the Canadian Museum of Nature in Ottawa.

Ayres says photography is a hobby of his that took off a few years ago.

“I was looking for something to do,” Ayres tells The Oshawa Express. “I’ve always liked the outdoors and nature and everything like that, so I decided to take the plunge and buy a camera about five or six years ago. I just kind of took it from there.”

Ayres says his skills have all been self-taught.

“It’s just a matter of spending as much time as you can outdoors with the camera. It’s all through practice – trial and error,” he says. “I look online at other people’s posts to get inspiration and guide from that too. I guess that’s how I found the contest, by searching the net for things like that.”

The Canadian Wildlife Photography of the Year exhibition is set to take place at the Ottawa museum until March 2016.