when we got down from the car, it was to each his own. nicky went the opposite way of adri, whom i trailed by several meters.
i don't know if it was because i was bringing a 300 mm lens which paled in comparison to my companions digiscoping set-ups, but the birds just didn't want to come near me! case in point: there were several blue-naped parrots squawking noisily, but they were waaaaaaaay up a cupang tree! the same tree was visited by sooty woodpeckers, greater flamebacks, bar-bellied cuckoo shrikes and more - all out of my 300mm x1.4's reach!
to add to that, it seems that the monkeys decided to declare that day tribal war day and so there were several of them up in the trees making a ruckus competing with another group up a tree across across from them. and there were more than two troops of monkeys competing that day! (monkeys freak me out).
pretty soon i was distracted by another set of fliers... ones which were more agreeable to being photographed!
there was an abundance of two of my favorite subic butterflies: the Lamproptera meges and Cheritra orpheus.
|can you see the other insect in this L. meges picture?|
there were several other lycaenids i was able to photograph:
|i always have a hard time pinning down the id of this one.|
|adri spotted this one during our lunch break at rali's. i thinks it's Cureta tagalica. |
it's rather drab underside's seen here, but it has a nice orange upperside
|another favorite, Caleta roxus,|
but the photo's not so good as it was nearing dusk when i took this.
there were several pierids also, which i've always thought were the most delicate-looking of the butterflies.
competing with the dragontails at one of the nectar plants were a lot of Eurema sp. another genus which confuses me.
there were also a good representative of Appias species, the Appias lyncida:
and the ever cheerful Appias nero:
a common butterfly in the city, this pair of Leptosia nina were in a tight embrace that allowed one of the pair to fly around carrying the other:
and later in the afternoon i saw a pair of Delias hyparete dancing around what looked like a wild relative of the santan (ixora):
while i was otherwise preoccupied with taking portraits of butterflies while in lotus position on the asphalt road, what would appear right beside me (no exaggeration) but a philippine coucal... obscured from my sight by a curtain of grass, as my photo clearly shows:
it did fly across the street but this time behind some tangles (can you say "skulker"?) so that my second shot was no better than my first!
in the afternoon, at a rare time when all three of us (i mean nicky, adri and i) were all in the same spot, a scale-feathered malkoha, a close relative of the coucal decided to show up, and although it was pretty much out in the open, this time it was quite some distance away and wouldn't keep still.
but by then i was too deep into butterfly photography to really care about my crappy bird photos, although i did attempt a brahminy kite in flight
back to the buttes...
there were also many species of skippers, but i won't attempt to id:
except for this one which i photographed at an unusual angle which is a flat and i know at least is a Tagiades sp.
speaking of face-to-face, how's this for eye contact with a Vindula dejone?
i always pay close attention to this tigbi (fig) tree in nabasan because there is almost always a butterfly resting on the fruit and this day was not the exception with a few Euploea settling in. i had to use the flash though.
Neptis sp. were also quite common. many members of this genus are called sailors... and somehow the name fits though i can't put my finger on why that is:
Hypolimnas bolina is also quite common in the city, but the bright irridescent blue spots on the upper wing never fail to mesmerize me.
nymphalids, like the Vindula, Euploea, Neptis and Hypolimnas are described as brush-footed butterflies because their forelegs have been reduced to brush-like pads so it looks like these insects only have 4 pairs of legs, as you can see if you count the legs of the other nymphalids below (you might have to click on the picture to get a larger view):
as the afternoon progressed, i began to notice the other group of lepidopterans, moths. some of them were hidden under the foliage but many were actually hidden in plain sight!
finally, the daylight faded and my last photo was of a pair of whiskered tree-swifts in the golden light. well, the day was supposed to be meant for the birds, at least it began and ended with birds.
(another owling go at the chocolate boobook, but once again owl i got was a heard only. *sigh* i will get you boobook, one day i will get you!)