Little Spiderhunter 3 by David Clarke

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A pair of little spiderhunters chose to build their nest in the tree almost outside the door of the bungalow where we were staying in Phuket. Little Spiderhunters are small birds – 16 – 16.5cm overall – and they move fast! Native to SE Asia, they build elongated nests with a side entrance – almost a porch! – that are fixed to the underside of leaves.The male was of course doing all the work, but Mrs LS was always on hand to make sure that he didn’t get sloppy. After taking numerous shots of Mr LS gripping onto the nest while he slowly built it, I decided it would be more fun to try to capture him arriving and leaving. He normally announced his imminent arrival with a cheep, but his departure was more subtle – a quick look around, a wiggle, then off. I normally got one shot per arrival or departure, and a lot of shots with a tail feather sticking up from the bottom of the frame! Leaving the nest was fascinating – he often just let himself fall from it, would immediately rotate his head 180º so his feet were in the air, as in this shot, then his body would rotate and out would come the wings – all this is a fraction of a second! This process is shown in the accompanying work Little Spiderhunter 2; in the present shot, the departure was more of a dive and the wings were opened almost immediately he let go.

Canon 1DMkII with Canon 300mm f2.8L IS lens; ISO800 f5.6 1/3200


birds, thailand, asia, phuket, nests, little spiderhunter

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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  • Olitto
    Olittoabout 5 years ago

    Great stop action photography. You have quite a range here, like all of them. Awesome work David.

  • Many thanks, Olitto, much appreciated.

    – David Clarke

  • LudaNayvelt
    LudaNayveltabout 5 years ago

    woooooooow! soooo perfect

  • Thanks for your lovely comment, Luda:))

    – David Clarke

  • dinghysailor1
    dinghysailor1about 5 years ago

    what a brilliant series of captures… lovely work – love the backlighting on his spread feathers here..

  • Thank you so much for your kind comment, Dinghysailor1, much appreciated:)

    – David Clarke

  • Beve Brown-Clark
    Beve Brown-Clarkabout 5 years ago


  • Many thanks, Beve:))

    – David Clarke

  • margotk
    margotkabout 5 years ago

    Brilliant shot!!!!

  • Thanks very much, Margot:)))

    – David Clarke

  • chijude
    chijudeabout 5 years ago

    Oh so very very well done!! Beautiful.,

  • Many thanks, Chijude, he turned out to be a very obliging fellow!

    – David Clarke

  • Dusker
    Duskerabout 5 years ago

    Great photo; action ++++

  • Thanks so much, Dusker, very much appreciated:)

    – David Clarke

  • Ann Warrenton
    Ann Warrentonabout 5 years ago

    Congratulation’s this is posted on the Overview page of I Love Birds.

  • Wow, thanks, Flowers, for the honour, I’m really thrilled!! :)))

    – David Clarke

  • handprintz
    handprintzabout 5 years ago

    Wow ! great action shot, lovely work

  • Thanks very much, Trudi, much appreciated!:))

    – David Clarke

  • Kimberley  x ♥ Davitt
    Kimberley x ♥...about 5 years ago

    Superb image!

  • Many thanks, Kim, thanks for stopping by:)

    – David Clarke

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