Saturday, September 10

1st Saturday of the month birdwalk at the PEC

Our Metro Manila-based group (Alex, Tere, Mark, Mel, Adri and myself) was wrapping up our Mindanao adventures when we fortuitously found ourselves in Davao City on the first Saturday of July. So we were invited by Pete of WBCP-Davao and Rai of the Philippine Eagle Foundation (and also WBCP-Davao) to join the regular birdwalk for the general public (also supported by Kenko Optics)  at the Philippine Eagle Center.

First Saturday of the Month Birdwalk at the Philippine Eagle Center
sponsored by the Philippine Eagle Foundation
in partnership with Wild Bird Club of the Philippines - Davao and Kenko Optics
(announcement from the PEF facebook page)

And so we made it a point to be at Malagos at 630am, a group of people of all ages was already starting out birding. They were looking at a white-collared kingfisher behind the souvenir and snack shacks at the entrance of the watershed.

First bird of the day: Collared Kingfisher
photo c/o Tere C.

It was great to see so much interest in the guided trip. It was a group of over 30 with photographers, PEF volunteers, birders, grade school and high school kids, parents (and even a baby!) who joined the birdwalk.  Some were first time birders, while others were already bitten by the birding bug. 

Some blue-throated bee-eaters perched on leafless branches earned oohs and aaahs, especially for those who were seeing them for the first time. Another bird which was spotted just outside the center was the purple-throated sunbird.  Adri first pointed out the juliae subspecies which was much more yellow in the belly (rather than red), and later the participants also spotted the more common trochilus subspecies (with the bright red breast).

Purple-throated Sunbird juliae

Birding at the entrance of the PEC
The group stopped at the sunny veranda of the pond at the PEC to look at flowerpeckers, bulbuls, doves, barbets and swallows. 

Getting some morning sun while birding
The children became engrossed with watching the pacific swallows feeding their young in mud nests built under the bridge.

The kids watching the Pacific Swallows under the bridge.

The party was split up to smaller groups and we all took different trails around the PEC. Our group walked around the enclosures and to the area where the Philippine Eagle Mindanao is exhibited. Above Mindanao is a large ficus tree, where we spotted more doves, barbets, flowerpeckers, bulbuls and starlings.  Near the bamboo clump, we saw Black-naped Monarchs, a White-throated Kingfisher and a Philippine Coucal.

Mindanao - always curiously watching the birders.

We ran into Alex's group, they were looking high up into the bamboo at a large Red-tailed Rat Snake!  The snake caught everyone's attention, probably even more than any bird that morning! 

A beautiful red-tailed rat snake up in the bamboo.

After a couple of hours, the whole group assembled at the seminar room and sat down to compile the bird list for the morning.  While settling down, we were joined by a glossy swiftlet who was nesting at a corner of the room.

Glossy swiftlet nests are all over the PEF offices

The neighborhood kids (who joined the birdwalk for the first time) contributing to the birdlist.

It was an impressive list of 33 species which was consolidated for the 3-hour birdwalk!

So happy to see a regular walk being conducted in Davao, thanks to the tremendous enthusiasm of the PEF staff and volunteers and WBCP-Davao!  This was one of the goals we had discussed at our workshop last year and it's great that it has come to fruition! 

Loving the realization of Rai's mind map from our 2015 workshop!

I hope to have the chance to join again soon. 

So anytime you find yourself in Davao on the first Saturday of the month, here's a fun, relaxing and enriching activity you can join!  There's so much to see at the PEC beyond the rescued and captive-bred animals. 

Here's the link to the PEF facebook page for more announcements and information.  (They also have a last Saturday of the month Nature Discovery Walk which doesn't start out so early in the morning!)

Birdlist c/o Pete:
Philippine Eagle Center, Davao City, Davao del Sur, PH
Jul 2, 2016 6:00 AM - 9:00 AM

33 species

Brahminy Kite (Haliastur indus) 1
Zebra Dove (Geopelia striata) 1
White-eared Brown Dove (Phapitreron leucotis) 8
Black-faced Coucal (Centropus melanops) 1
Philippine Coucal (Centropus viridis) 2
Glossy Swiftlet (Collocalia esculenta) 6
Southern Silvery Kingfisher (Ceyx argentatus) 1
White-throated Kingfisher (Halcyon gularis) 2
Rufous-lored Kingfisher (Todiramphus winchelli) 1
Collared Kingfisher (Todiramphus chloris) 3
Blue-throated Bee-eater (Merops americanus) 4
Coppersmith Barbet (Psilopogon haemacephalus) 2
Buff-spotted Flameback (Chrysocolaptes lucidus) 1
Guaiabero (Bolbopsittacus lunulatus) 2
Philippine Hanging Parrot/Colasisi (Loriculus philippensis) 3
White-breasted Woodswallow (Artamus leucorynchus) 2
Pied Triller (Lalage nigra) 2
Black-naped Monarch (Hypothymis azurea) 2
Large-billed Crow (Corvus macrorhynchos) 2
Pacific Swallow (Hirundo tahitica) 8
Yellow-wattled Bulbul (Pycnonotus urostictus) 2
Yellow-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus goiavier) 4
Philippine Bulbul (Hypsipetes philippinus) 5
Brown Tit-Babbler (Macronus striaticeps) 4
Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis) 6
Coleto (Sarcops calvus) 4
Red-keeled Flowerpecker (Dicaeum australe) 4
Orange-bellied Flowerpecker (Dicaeum trigonostigma) 2
Brown-throated Sunbird (Anthreptes malacensis) 1
Purple-throated Sunbird (Leptocoma sperata) 7 ssp juliaeand ssp trochilus
Olive-backed Sunbird (Cinnyris jugularis) 4
Naked-faced Spiderhunter (Arachnothera clarae) 1
Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus) 10

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