Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week: Sunbirds and Spiderhunters

Sunbirds and spiderhunters are both from the Nectariniidae family, of passerine birds. These birds are characterised by slender, usually downward-curved bills. Sunbirds are known to hover in front of the flowers (just like hummingbirds) or perch on the branches when extracting nectar from flowers. Males and females of sunbirds species are physically different, often in body size, but also in plumage colouration and other characteristics. This is termed sexual dimorphism. However, adult spiderhunters do not vary much in their plumage colour.

Thank you to all the photographers that submitted photos of birds with the theme Sunbirds or Spiderhunters. We admire birds for their beauty and their ability to fly. Most importantly birds are admired for the role they play in the ecosystem. These pictures create awareness about the variety and beauty of birds in our environment. Here we present the Top 25 photographs of birds of the week.


The Beautiful Sunbird is native to tropical Africa. Its range extend from Senegal and Guinea in the west to Sudan, South Sudan, Ethiopia and Kenya in the east. Photo taken at the Brufut, The Gambia (Antonis Tsaknakis)


The Black-throated Sunbird is found in the Indian Subcontinent and adjoining regions of Southeast Asia. This bird is found in subtropical or tropical moist forests or tropical moist montane forests. Photo taken in Sattal, Uttarakhand, India (Gargi Biswas)


The Crimson sunbird is a resident bird known to breed in tropical southern Asia from India, through Nepal, Bangladesh and Myanmar to Indonesia. Photo taken in Chanfi, India (Ashish Singh)


Crimson-backed Sunbird photographed in Munnar, Kerala (Ashok Appu)


The Fire-tailed Sunbird inhabits temperate forests and subtropical or tropical moist montane forests. It is found in the northern parts of the Indian Subcontinent, mainly the Himalayas and some adjoining parts of the Southeast Asia (Kalyani Kapdi)


Mrs. Gould’s Sunbird. The species has an extremely large range. It is found in Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, Hong Kong, India, Laos, Myanmar, Nepal, Thailand and Vietnam. This photo was taken at Phrumsingla National Park, Bhutan (Ramesh Aithal)


Green-tailed Sunbird, sometimes called the Nepal Yellow-backed Sunbird, is found in northern regions of the Indian Subcontinent. Stretching eastwards into parts of Southeast Asia. Photo taken in Bhutan (Deepa Javdekar)


The Little Spiderhunter is one of the long-billed nectar-feeding bird found in moist forests of South and Southeast Asia. Unlike sunbirds, males and females of this species appear very similar in plumage. Photographed at Thattekkad, Kerala (Pavan ML)


Little Spiderhunter photographed at Munnar, Kerala, India (Poonam S Nayaka)


The Loten’s sunbird is also known as the Long-billed Sunbird or Maroon-breasted Sunbird. It is endemic to peninsular India and Sri Lanka. Photographed at Munnar, Kerala, India (Poonam S Nayaka)


The Malachite Sunbird is found from the highlands of Ethiopia southwards to South Africa. These birds pollinate many flowers, particularly those with long corolla tubes, in the fynbos. This photo was taken in Western Cape, South Africa (Mary Walker)


Malachite Sunbird seen in the Western Cape Province of South Africa (Mary Walker)


Mrs. Gould’s sunbird photographed at Phrumsingla National Park, Bhutan (Ramesh Aithal)


Purple-rumped Sunbirds are endemic to the Indian Subcontinent. These birds breed throughout the year and they may sometimes have two broods, mainly during the monsoons. Photographed at Surat ,Gujarat , India (Sharad Vadoliya)


Male Purple-rumped Sunbird photographed at Nagpur, Maharashtra, India (Narendra Nikhare)


Purple Sunbird Photographed at Hooghly, Westbengal (Soumya Chakraborty)


Purple Sunbirds are widely distributed from West Asia through the Indian Subcontinent and into Southeast Asia. They are resident in most parts of their range and they do not move large distances. Photographed at Ibri, Sultanate of Oman (Dr SS Suresh)


Female Purple Sunbird photographed in Fazilka, Punjab March (Swarn Singh)


Fire-tailed Sunbird at Phrumsingla National Park, Bhutan by (Ramesh Aithal)


Shining sunbirds are highly dimorphic and have three distinct plumages, juvenile, immature and adult. This photo is of a female Shinning Sunbird. Photographed at Salalah, Sultanate of Oman (Dr SS Suresh)


Male Shining Sunbird photographed at Salalah, Sultanate of Oman (Dr SS Suresh)


The Southern Double Collared Sunbird, also known as the Lesser Double-collared Sunbird, is a small passerine bird which breeds in southern Africa. Most populations of this species are mainly resident, but individuals in the north-east of its range are partially migratory. Photo taken in Western Cape, South Africa (Sue-Lesley Norgate)


Spectacled spiderhunter photographed at the Fraser Hills, in Malaysia (Senthil Kumar Damodaran)


Streaked Spiderhunters are similar in size to sparrows. Streaked spiderhunters can be found alone or in pairs, and they fed mainly on the nectar of flowers such as wild banana blossom. Photo taken in Pahang, Malaysia (Malini Shanmuganathan)


25.The Variable Sunbird mostly feed on nectar while hovering over a flower, much like a hummingbird. They are only 10 centimeters long! This was photographed in Rwanda with field guide Nelis Wolmarans Photography (Owen Deutsch photography)

The Variable Sunbird mostly feed on nectar while hovering over a flower, much like a hummingbird. They are only 10 centimeters long! This was photographed in Rwanda with field guide Nelis Wolmarans Photography (Owen Deutsch photography)


Our mission is to build a global community around the freedom and beauty of birds in the wild as ambassadors for the natural ecosystems that they depend upon. They are the music, decoration, and character of every terrestrial habitat on the planet and have been around since the dinosaurs. They are the witnesses and ambassadors of the awesome power of nature. The wide availability of good, cheap optics has opened their world to us for the last few decades. Amazing, affordable DSLR cameras with long lenses are delivering brilliant digital bird imagery to online communities.

We are in a day-and-age during which more bird species are threatened with extinction than ever before. The Wild Birds! Revolution aims to publish the “Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week” to 1 million people every week by the end of the year. That is a revolution that will change the world! Join thousands of other weekend naturalists, photographers, birders, experts, hikers, nature-lovers, guides, scientists, conservationists and artists that share the thousands of wild bird photographs submitted to the Wild Bird Trust website and Facebook page. Thousands of wild bird enthusiasts are going out every day to photograph our planet’s beautiful birdlife. Pick up your camera, fill your bird feeder, open your heart, and join the Wild Birds! Revolution!!

Edited by Abigail Ramudzuli, Campaign Manager