Sunday, December 27, 2020

Post Christmas Birding

The day after Christmas - the sun was shining brightly and traffic was surprisingly light - a perfect day to go birding. Our choice destination was nearby U.P. Diliman. On the way, we decided to pass by the "canal" at the White Plains road for a possible Little Egret and maybe, who knows, a Common Kingfisher. Unfortunately, both species were nowhere in sight.  We moved on and along White Plains road, we saw a Philippine Pygmy Woodpecker perched on the branch of a bare tree. It was a bit too high and the early morning sun was shining brightly at it thus resulting in only a "documentary" shot.

Below that tree, perched on an electric wire, was a Pied Triller! 

We've passed this road so many times before but it was only this day that we saw these birds here. There were even some Crested Mynas but they didn't stay long enough to be photographed. Also a Long-tailed Shrike showed up (another first in this place) but it was far and backlit. Anyway I'm certain we would get better photos of this species in U.P.

At the Hardin ng Rosas, we also were thrilled to see quite a number of species at the pond. First was a White-throated Kingfisher.

Black-winged Stilts - there were five of them - were already foraging the shallow waters.

A Common Moorhen was out in the open.

Another surprise was an immature Black-crowned Night Heron standing by the waters.

While waiting for the White-breasted Waterhen to come out from behind the Night Heron, I took an obligatory shot of the Yellow-vented Bulbul.

Finally the Waterhen, an immature, came in full view.

As we were leaving the Hardin, a Zebra Dove came right beside our car.

At the campus, we first had breakfast at Rodic's to enjoy the best Tapsilog there is. After enjoying our meal, we proceeded to the Astronomy Department Building where we are sure to find the Long-tailed Shrike. And of course, it was there.

Behind the place was a small patch of "talahib" where Scaly-breasted Munias feed. They were a bit skittish perhaps due to the frequent passing of joggers and bikers. We waited patiently and after a while the flock came close enough for us to get good shots.

There weren't many birds at the usual birding spots in the campus so we both agreed to call it a day. On the way out, I spotted a Brown Shrike at the open field behind the oval.

A short stopover at the subdivision where we used to live only yielded another Brown Shrike.

We went to the White Plains canal again hoping our target birds would be there but still no luck. A Grey Wagtail was there but didn't stay long enough for us to get a photo. On the other hand, a Philippine Pied Fantail was more obliging.

It wasn't bad for a post-Christmas birding especially because of the number of species we saw particularly at the Hardin.

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