For years with my old camera system I made extreme macro photos the old fashioned way... by holding the flash on a cable in my left hand and the camera in my right, peering through the viewfinder and slowly rocking the camera in and out of focus a mere couple of centimeters from the subject, hoping for an in focus shot (you can't use autofocus on really close macros). It's physically demanding--the only photography that makes me sweat-- and requires patience and precision. You can't use a tripod... by the time you get the camera aimed, the critter will be long gone. So it's flash and timing and a lot of patience and sweat. Most shots aren't keepers, so you have to work for it.
Now that I've moved over to Canon, two things have happened. First, my new macro lens, the EF 100mm f.2.8 L IS macro, has a lot longer working distance from the subject than my old Olympus Four Thirds macro lens. And that makes it much easier to get the animal shots.
And second, I treated myself to a Chinese copy of the Canon macro ring flash. This will be a LOT easier than holding the flash in one hand and the camera in the other... things will be a lot steadier! The critters will be photographed before they even know what's happening.
I'm really looking forward to the next few years of macro shooting!