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The spiderhunters are birds of the genus Arachnothera, part of the sunbird family Nectariniidae. The genus contains eleven species found in the forests of south and southeastern Asia. Spiderhunters may be important pollinators of some species of plants, and species pollinated by spiderhunters have long tubular flowers. They may also participate in nectar robbing, which consists of inserting the bill into the side of the flower to extract nectar without being dabbed with pollen..........The spiderhunters are omnivorous. As their name suggests they will eat spiders, and are capable of extracting spiders from the centre of their webs, a tricky task. They also consume a wide range of other small arthropod prey including crickets, caterpillars, butterflies, ants and other insects. In addition to animal prey they also consume nectar from flowers. Their tubular tongue is pushed against the top of the upper mandible of the bill, then pulled in and out, creating a pressure difference which allows the nectar to be sucked into the mouth...


Unlike the rest of the family, which is more widespread, the spiderhunters are confined to the Oriental zoogeographic region, occurring from India east to The Philippines and from the Himalayas south to Java; they reach their greatest species diversity in the Thai-Malay peninsula, Sumatra and Borneo. These are mostly forest birds, occupying a wide range of forest types including true rainforest, dipterocarp forest, swamp forest, bamboo forest, secondary forest, forest edge and other highly degraded forest.

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Ashok N Pulliyerengi
Ashok N Pulliyerengi 12 years ago

Thanks Joao, Alice & Satyen

Wild Things
Wild Things 12 years ago

Fantastic shot and description Ashok.

alicelongmartin 12 years ago

Excellent information and picture!

João Mourão
João Mourão 12 years ago

amazing spot.

Puducherry, Puducherry, India

Spotted on Feb 13, 2012
Submitted on Feb 13, 2012

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