This humming-bird hawk-moth appears to be coming out of the darkness like a Peanuts World War I flying ace to attack the lavender. In fact the shot was taken in broad daylight but the sychronised flash has highlighted just the foreground.
These amazing insects visit the lavender in the garden at our house during the summer months. They spend their time darting from flower to flower at incredible speed. They don’t settle on the flower but grasp it with two legs, their probosces flick out and back in a tiny fraction of a second and then they are off to the next flower. Capturing their images therefore required a bit of patience and experimentation. I used flash for some, extension tubes and various lenses.There are some other shots elsewhere in my RB Art.
For this shot, the blur of the wings was captured at a mere 1/1000 – for the other shots where the wings have been almost stopped, the exposure was 1/4000.

Canon 1DMkII with 300mm f2.8L IS lens + 25mm tube; ISO400 f4.5 1/1000 with sychronised Canon 550EX Speedlite.

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moths, nature, wildlife, insects

Living for partly in Italy, partly in Phuket and partly in other locations around the world – Hong Kong & Kenya when I can – I spend a lot of time photographing anything and everything. I particularly enjoy the challenge of capturing shots of wildlife large and small – from elephants to insects. A wider selection of my work can be seen on my website at

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  • kathy s gillentine
    kathy s gillen...over 5 years ago

    wow David, outstanding capture

  • Thanks very much, Kathy.

    – David Clarke

  • LjMaxx
    LjMaxxover 5 years ago

    Wow.. Great angle. We have a simular one here called the Sphinx Moth.. Fast , fuzzy and beautiful.. Has the look of royalty about it.. Hard to get shots of too..:)

  • Many thanks, Lj :)

    – David Clarke

  • jesika
    jesikaover 5 years ago

    This year? ENVY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Butterfly Conservation have a direct recording system for HBHM & Painted Lady, there have been many sightings already, not in MY garden………….
    Lovely shot, they are so fast.

  • I must confess, Jesika, that this shot is not this year’s! However, I did see a couple of the wee beasties buzzing around the garden last week. Thanks for your info on Butterfly Conservation; they wrote back to me and asked to use some of the photos. Thanks too for your comment.

    – David Clarke

  • mrcoradour
    mrcoradourover 5 years ago

    What a superb shot, another of your great captures

  • Many thanks, Malcolm, much appreciated

    – David Clarke

  • Sandy Stewart
    Sandy Stewartover 5 years ago

    Wow, amazing action shot!!! : )

  • Thanks very much, Sandy

    – David Clarke

    JUSTARTover 5 years ago

    wonderful shot

  • Thanks so much, Justart!

    – David Clarke

  • AnnDixon
    AnnDixonover 5 years ago

    WOW !!!! what a wonderful capture, so well done,

  • Thanks so much, Ann:))

    – David Clarke

  • catherine walker
    catherine walkerabout 5 years ago


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