Our birder friends from Hong Kong: Wilson Dring and his wife, Peggy; Allwatin Choi and his wife, Grace, flew in to the Philippines for specific reason: to photograph the endemic Spotted Wood Kingfisher. They failed in this endeavor two years ago and now because of the presence of this species in nearby University of the Philippines' campus in Diliman, they are hoping to be successful this time around. Since our friend, Peter Ting, was not feeling well that Saturday, we readily guided our guests to the "frogs" area where the kingfisher had been seen recently.
After a hearty lunch at Cafe Via Mare, we proceeded to the area where our target bird hangs out. As soon as we arrived at the place, I saw the kingfisher fly towards the wooded part. As our friends were putting their photography gears in place, Wilson yelled, "kingfisher!" Not even five minutes have passed since we got there and the Spotted Wood Kingfisher had already been spotted by our friends. For about two hours the friendliest Actenoides lindsayi posed for us.
While our friends from Hong Kong were having a field day photographing their target bird, Cynthia and I scouted the area hoping to see the Philippine Hawk Cuckoo. We dipped on that but got two new friends in return. Brothers Leo and Dennis were looking for the Philippine Scops Owls and we gladly showed them where the nocturnal birds were snoozing. Unfortunately, the owls were so well hidden behind the bamboo clump that it was impossible to get pictures of them.
At around 4 pm, we had to call it day. Our visitors still had to check in to their hotel and take a much needed rest inasmuch as they've been awake since the early morning hours. It was a happy day for all of us. Wilson, Peggy, Allwatin and Grace all got what they came here for and we were glad that they did.
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