Piotr (Peter) Naskrecki is an entomologist, photographer and author, based at the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University (Cambridge, MA, USA.). He received his M. Sc. degree in Zoology from the A. Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland;, and a Ph.D. in Entomology from the University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT. Between 2002 and 2009 Piotr served as Director of the Invertebrate Diversity Initiative at the Center for Applied Biodiversity Science at Conservation International, Washington, D.C. His research focuses on the evolution of katydids and related insects, and the theory and practice of nature conservation. Currently Piotr directs the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Laboratory at Gorongosa National Park in Mozambique.

As a photographer, Piotr strives to promote appreciation and conservation of invertebrate animals – insects, arachnids, and their kin – by capturing both their beauty and roles as vital, often critically important members of the Earth’s ecosystems. He is one of the founding members of the International League of Conservation Photographers (ILCP).

Piotr is the author of over 30 scientific, peer-reviewed papers and book chapters, and his photographs and nature writing have been published in a number of national and international publications, including The Smithsonian Magazine, Natural History, National Wildlife, National Geographic, BBC Wildlife Magazine, BBC Knowledge, Terre Sauvage, Time magazine, Ranger Rick, and many others. His book “The Smaller Majority” (Harvard University Press 2005) illustrates a multitude of threats faced by invertebrate animals, whereas his most recent book “Relics: Travels in Nature’s Time Machine” (University of Chicago Press 2011) explores ancient organisms and ecosystems of the globe. Piotr’s photography has been exhibited in numerous venues, including the American Museum of Natural History in New York, The Natural Museum in London, Harvard Museum of Natural History, Aquamarine Fukushima (Japan), and others.

To license Piotr Naskrecki’s images please contact Minden Pictures stock agency. If the images you are looking for are not available in the Minden’s catalog please contact us directly. You can also visit Piotr’s website at www.naskrecki.com to see additional images.

Piotr’s expertise is available for press or book assignments as either a photographer or a science writer. Contact us for details.

48 Comments Add yours

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  2. kim says:

    Love your website — I saw an old article about the Goliath Spider, theraphosa blondi, while looking through FB and thought it was completely fascinating. I have always been interested in the biodiversity of all levels of our world, but your website is truly incredible and eye-opening.

    Thank you, sir.

  3. Andy B says:

    Hello Piotr,

    I like your work, please keep spreading the word on how important observation and specimen collection is, and how irrational it is to criticize this kind of work when we are all at least involuntary killers every day.

    Thank you!

    BTW I live in Chile which probably has impressive fauna, but lack of scientific funding keeps books for the public about Chilean wildlife ver scarce.

    1. Dawn Prince-Hughes says:

      Your “specimens” are sentient beings, with lives in a great context they participated in, lives they valued. In killing them so humans can look at them dead and out of context is something we need to move away from. It’s cruel and morbid and remains as a revaunchist practice that clings to the outmoded notion that we can know nature in a lab.

  4. James says:


    I just watches a video of you on youtube talking about house centipedes. I’ve been living with them since 2001 (17 years. I have a basement office and they are all around. I’ve seen the large ones fight until a leg gets torn off. I’ve seen one take down a very large wolf spider. It would charge and bite, then retreat and circle, charge and bite again. When the spider was sufficiently poisoned and moving slowly, it grabbed one large leg and dragged it along the wall until it was hidden behind a wood 2×4 stud. Like you, I gently catch and release them if they are stuck in a sink or a cup. As you mentioned, they are great little protectors of houses and I’ve even convinced my significant other about their worth. What I’m here to wright about is that the house centipede has a good memory. There’s a crack in the cement next to my office desk where I’m sure it’s somewhat moist inside. Obviously a great place for them. The thing is, I’ll turn the basement lights on, which they hate, and they’ll travel/traverse across the basement, come up a step into my office, go up the wall behind my desk and go into the crack. They know where it is from about 35 feet away and past many obstacles. It’s quite amazing. They also like to leave their butts sticking out when the light is turned on. They don’t realize how long they are. Quite funny and cute. But the memory aspect really moves them up a notch in intelligence. Thought this was worth mentioning.


  5. papuanas says:

    Hi piotr!

    I just run up against a beautiful picture of the tube-nosed fruit bad. The photo is referred to you on this page. I really like it!

    I try to inspire people to make the world a better place and do something good. Was wondering if I could use the picture to tell a story about uncommon species in the rainforest of Papua.

    Of course, I will give you a humble credit!

  6. Surendra says:

    Hello sir, I want to upload Indian spp. of insects.

  7. Kevin Franck says:

    Hello Piotr Naskrecki,

    My name is Kevin Franck, I write quite a bit about ecology and I like the photo you have on Fairy Shrimp in your tough as nails post. I’d like to use it with your permission to illustrate richness of floodplains in providing a nursery for Salmon and other endangered fish. Follow my FB page and you’ll know who I am. If not, no problem, I can search another.

    Cheers, Kevin

  8. Duborget Robin says:

    Hello Piotr,
    I have tried to contact you on Facebook but didn’t succeed.
    I’m a french naturalist mainly interested in Orthoptera, returning from a costa rican trip.
    I have found that identify Orthoptera in Costa Rica is so much harder than identify them in France !
    By chance, can you help me ?
    I have a flickr album with all the species I saw during this summer : https://www.flickr.com/gp/141135600@N04/bt5mbA


  9. Wach says:

    Witam Panie Piotrze,
    na GMX (moj provider) sa od czasu do czasu swietne nowosci ze zdarzen z calegoa swiata. po IMIENIU i nazwisku bylam pewna ze Pan to polak zyjacy w Stanach od dziecka albo wyemigrowal pozniej. Ja zyje w Niemczech i ten artykul o tych parasitach mnie zainteresowal. W artykule jest mowa o filmie jak sie ten parasit chce wydostac spod skory Pana. Niestety nie moge znalezc tego filmu. oProsze wskazac link. Z gory b. dzeikuje za to.
    Pozdrawiam z Niemiec


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  11. kenny says:

    Hi Piotr

    I’m a avid teen who really loves the animal and insect kingdom. I would really love to learn more from you in person or through an internship. I lived in Singapore where such trade in Entomologist is rare. I really hope you could reply me . Thanks :)

  12. David Smith says:


    Just wanted to inform you that a Facebook page called ‘the ladbible’ has run a story about you and the goliath spider. The writer calls you a loser for not killing it.

    I felt it was important you know this as it’s disrespectful.



  13. Arny Katz says:

    It would be great if you could describe how you take photos of arthropods while they are feeding on you. How do you focus? What kind of photographic equipment do you use? You photos are outstanding.

  14. Clara Lacy says:

    Dear Mr Naskrecki,

    I came across your website whilst researching Oil Beeltes for a project I am working on about sexual dimorphism in the animal kingdom.

    I find your work and photography fascinating and am so so happy that I have discovered a place I can read and view all the amazing oddities that have evolved in the natural world and someone who writes about them with such passion.

    I am an artist living and working in London who is currently undergoing research for a series of drawings I’m conjunction with Prof Judith Mank at UCL. My series is covering the taxa stated by Prof Manks research with the Tree of Sex Consortium. An amazing website of data looking at all the fascinating ways in which reproduction takes place.

    As an artist I am producing a series of drawings, one for each taxonomic group that show strong sexual dimorphism.

    I would love to hear of any striking examples you know of especially in the Reptilia, Amphibia, Coleoptera and the Acari all of which I am some what stuck on to find some decent reference images to draw from!

    I understand you must be very busy but would be immensely grateful of any ideas you might have.

    Thank you very much for your time.

    Looking forward to hearing from you.

    All the best,


  15. They look so frightening but are actually cool when you look at them again.

  16. Neil O'Malley says:

    Mind blowing!

  17. Koniu says:

    Super fotografię ! Zdolny z Pana człowiek , pozdrawiam.

  18. cassie roatz says:

    Hi there Piotr.
    I just wanted to say thank you. I’m glad to see that there are people out there that still love the wildlife and all its inhabitants, including spiders. I live in Australia, so spiders aren’t a rarity to me, (in fact I probably have at least ten different species in my back yard and inside my house as I write this message) but I just wanted to congratulate you on going out there and finding amazing animals to share with the world. So thank you for that.

    – cassie :)

  19. Chris says:

    Hi Piotr,
    I was wondering, which lens are you using for your wide-angle macro shots? They have to be the best I’ve ever seen on the web!
    Thanks in advance!

    1. Hi Chris,
      I have written a number of posts about the equipment and techniques I use for wide angle macro. Here is a sample:

  20. It's very important says:

    Hi Piotr!
    I’m Italian and I sent you a message on your pubblic Facebook profile. Please, can you see? It’s very, very, very important! I try to contact you in every way but it’s difficult!

  21. Barbara I. Biel says:

    “It is certain that there may be extraordinary mental activity with an extremely small absolute mass of nervous matter: thus the wonderfully diversified instincts, mental powers, and affections of ants are notorious, yet their cerebral ganglia are not so large as the quarter of a small pin’s head. Under this point of view, the brain of an ant is one of the most marvelous atoms of matter in the world, perhaps more so than the brain of a man.” – Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species, 1859

    I suggest you read some Darwin, evolve morally, and start treating animals with respect and dignity because they are sentient and autonomous individuals, not specimens!

  22. Barbara I. Biel says:

    Are you going to post my comments to your blog or are you afraid of criticism? And now I see that you closed the comments. You coward!

  23. cathenka says:

    Just wanted to say that your post about the goliath was really interesting and the photos were beautiful. I have recently started a blog about overcoming arachnophobia through inquisitiveness and appreciating spiders and thought you might like to give it a look. (araneae.weebly.com) best of luck with your photography.
    Anna Cathenka

  24. Debbie says:

    Great site, I haven’t enjoyed anything as much since I read Gerald Durrell’s books years ago. I look forward to reading more of your adventures.

  25. I do like your blog. Apparently you are an expert on the origins of words as well:
    (If the link dies, you were described as a “Harvard etymologist.” Congratulations on your new career.

  26. Margaret Walker says:

    Hello- Im so fascinated and appreciative of your blog-I found it when I hit a link in a Yahoo news story…Let me just say your photos showing the delicate beauty and diversity of these creatures are breathtaking. I live in Chicago and 8 years ago started gardening organically-recently I started seeing praying mantis’ and felt a irrational surge of pride-they are coming to my garden because Im all organic! I spend alot of time watching them. I had no idea there was such variety amongst crickets (another love of mine) and praying mantis’. Thank you.

  27. vynbos says:

    Hi Piotr
    I check your site every week for you latest blog. There’s been nothing since June. I hope this is because you are out in the field discovering wonderful things.
    Chris, Cape Town.

  28. Bill Branch says:

    Dear Piotr
    I had hoped that we’d meet one day in Mozambique – MO Rodel was going to try and fix things up. Hopefully sometime. Please contact me if you have chance about the blindsnakes and other groups in the region. Congratulations on the absolutely stunning photography and interesting text. Smaller Majority is one of my favourite sites.

  29. Hi,

    Would it be possible for me to reproduce the feather-legged centipede image on my website? It’s really cool. email is j-coyne (at) uchicago.edu


    1. ROBERT says:

      Witaj PIOTR !!

  30. HEXAPODA says:

    Glad I stumbled on your Blog and website. Very interesting and informative!

  31. Hi Dr. Naskrecki,
    I want to your help about MANTIS that developed by you. I want to change mantis photo at the menu interface of MANTIS. But I do not know how can i do it. And the other problem is, in the first run of MANTIS it gives an error about betwween the sytem date and time and the file settings. How can I fixed it.

    Sincerely yours.

    1. Sorry my English.
    2. Good blog and good work (MANTIS).

  32. Duncan Easton says:

    The world definitely does need another photo blog when the photos AND the writing are this good.
    My 7 year old daughter and I are captivated by every new post. Thank you for taking the time to do this.



  33. You have a wonderful blog here! Great photos about fantastic critters! I’ll be following!


  34. Tomasz says:

    Ma Pan fantastyczne fotografie. Gratuluje zdjec w NYT – sa swietne. Dziekuje za info nt sprzetu, ktore Pan podaje przy kazdym zdjeciu. Powodzenia. Tomasz Kruk

  35. Len says:

    Hi Piotr
    Len de Beer in Maputo Mozambique here. I saw your pics from Gorongoza and there is a particular Mantid that you photographed that I took a picture of in Nelspruit (South africa). I would like to send you the photo. Please contact me at len.debeer@gmail.com
    Thank you

    1. It's very important says:

      Hi Piotr!
      I’m Italian and I sent you a message on your pubblic Facebook profile. Please, can you see? It’s very, very, very important! I try to contact you in every way but it’s difficult!

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