Afraid of Heights. (Cepaea nemoralis)
I often hear about photography as being driven by capturing moments that ambiently exist; i.e. a photographer is there to record an event, but not necessarily interact with it. This photo doesn’t look manipulated until you think about the ergonomics of a grove snail ascending a young, slight furry herb. I found this guy (well, hermaphrodite) in his normal habitat—the smooth ground—and stuck him on a plant for added color. He wasn’t too happy about it. He fell a number of times, but I kept sticking him up there, probably confusing the hell out of the ~20 neurons he has. I’d like to think that his eyes are particularly extended because he’s bug-eyed in a fear of heights, as opposed to simply conforming to his invertebrate anatomy. When I was done, I gave him some rotting leaves to eat, hoping that would relieve his stress levels.
Which leads me to wonder, if you take a female hermit crab’s shell and give it to a male hermit crab, is it a cross-dressing hermit crab? (Can’t do this with snails; they would die)