Sunday, April 24, 2011

Week ending 24th April - Bohol

A brilliant trip to Bohol for easter. The birding started at the hotel, with a flyover pair of Pink-necked Green Pigeons as we arrived. Birds around the hotel and on the beach were pretty standard, but did include a decent sized flock of Common Terns, ssp. longipennis, which were very striking with their long tails streamers and bright white tail and rumps.

On Wednesday I took a trip to Rajah Sikatuna N.P. that I'd arranged with Ryan Sugala. A great day out in a truly wonderful patch of forest. We spent the first few hours of the day trying to track down Yellow-breasted Tailorbird, which we eventually did, but not without several hours of graft. While searching we bumped into a pair of Rufous-lored Kingfishers, another target species. Other forest specials included Black-faced Coucal, White-eared Brown Dove, Samar Hornbill, Blue Fantail, Brown Tit-Babbler, Philippine Trogon, Spangled Drongo, Philippine Leaf Warbler, Philippine Bulbul, Yellow-wattled Bulbul, Black-naped Monarch, Rusty-breasted Cuckoo, Bicolored Flowerpecker. Migrants included a trio of Chinese Goshawk high over the forest.

We left the park to go to a stake out for Silvery Kingfisher, which we located after a short search. What a stunning bird! One of those birds which are never illustrated satisfactorily, always being more amazing than any illustration.

We only dipped on one of my four main targets (the two Kingfishers and the Tailorbird we got, but we couldn't find the Visayan Wattled Broadbill), so there is a great reason to return to this wonderful forest. Next year sometime!

White-eared Brown Dove, ssp. brevirostris. Much paler headed than the race on Luzon, leucotis.

Silvery Kingfisher, ssp. flumenicola. The purple wash to the underparts separate this race from the nominate race further south in Mindanao. One of the most beautiful kingfishers I've ever seen.

The backside of a male Philippine Trogon. Very camera shy, this species is gorgeous, really!

Oriental Magpie-Robin, ssp. mindanensis.

Male Olive-backed Sunbird, ssp. jugularis. Clearly lacking the orange wash below the dark breast present in ssp. aurora (see post from Palawan, Jan 1st - 6th)

Female Olive-backed Sunbird.

Headless male Samar Hornbill.

Common Tern, ssp. longipennis.

An out-of-focus shot of one of the most gorgeous coucals anywhere, Black-faced Coucal. A true stunner of the forests of southern Philippines.

Male (above) and female Colugo, or Flying Lemur


  1. That kingfisher is feckin awesome!

  2. Tim told me it was regularly voted bird of the trip on his tours, beating stunners such as Azure-breasted Pitta, Wattled Broadbills, Phil Eagle etc.