Monday, April 05, 2010

U.P. Swing

Our birding activities went into a slight upswing as we met up with fellow birder photographer Ely Teehankee at the campus grounds of the University of the Philippines. It was about 6 am and as dawn brightened up the skies, a flock of birds congregated on a fruiting "bignay" tree. They were mostly comprised of the ubiquitous Eurasian Tree Sparrows and Yellow-vented Bulbuls.

"Lowland White-eyes!" Ely whispered as he pointed to the constantly moving tiny green and white birds. I just chalked up my first lifer for the day.

After a while, avian activity died down. Ely, Cynthia and I explored the other birding areas in the campus without much success, except for a forlorn-looking Brown Shrike.

When we returned to our original meeting place, Ralf Nabong was already there. He hasn't seen much either although birdsongs filled the morning air. It was when another member of the PBP (Philippine Bird Photographers) group, Doc Mando, showed up that things started to get interesting. Pretty soon he was directing our attention at about four Ashy Minivets (our target bird..and another lifer!) flitting high up in the tree tops.

Soon a pair of Black-naped Orioles began calling loudly to one another.

My wife and I wanted to stay longer but family commitments necessitated that we cut our birding foray short. We were happy, though, that we have added a couple of species to our lifelist.

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