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Tiny Brahminy Kite...

Mount Kitanglad




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Top-quality holidays

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Small groups - size limit=6

Finest birding in Asia




Red-eared Parrotfinch





Indigo-banded Kinfisher

Los Banos -Makiling




Philippine Tarsier, Bohol




Blackish Cuckooshrike





Crested Goshawk

Mount Kitanglad




Apo Myna

Mt. Kitanglad




Amethyst Dove

Mt. Kitanglad




Steere's Honey-Buzzard

Mt. Kitanglad




Black-and-white Triller

Mount Makiling




A record shot of our

Blue-crowned Racquet-tail at

Tabunan forest on Cebu.




Brown Shrike

Los Banos




Candaba Marsh





Mt. Kitanglad




Eye-browed Thrush

Mt. Kitanglad




Philippine Macaque

Subic Bay




Philippine Pigeon

Subic Bay




Rufous-lored Kingfisher

Rajah Sikatuna, Bohol





Subic Bay




White-breasted Woodswallow

Subic Bay




Fire-breasted Flowerpecker

Mt. Kitanglad




Grey-streaked Flycatcher

Mt. Kitanglad





Subic Bay




Beauties on Mt. Makiling




Mountain White-eye





Purple [Philippine] Swamphens

Candaba Marsh




Pied Triller

Mt. Kitanglad




Red-eared Parrotfinch

Mt. Kitanglad




Striped Flowerpecker

Mt. Makiling




White-lored Oriole

Subic Bay




White-bellied Munia

Tabunan -Cebu




White-bellied Sea-Eagles

attending the Fruit Bat colony

at Subic Bay




White-breasted Woodswallow





Brown Shrike

Los Banos




White-lored Oriole

Subic Bay



All bird photographs taken

 ‘on tour’

are opportunity shots by

Stijn De Win

Copyright © Birding2asia 2008-2011. All rights reserved.


B2A Philippines 2011 tour report.

20 February - 5 March


Participants ; Noel Lock and Jill Gillman, David Branagh,

Bill Glanz, Lyle Babberl and Koen Job


Tour leader ; Stijn De Win


Luzon, Bohol, Cebu and Mindanao

Our trip list. Tour photos by Stijn.


Grey Heron   Ardea cinerea

Seen at Candaba marsh only, where common.


Purple Heron   Ardea purpurea

50+ birds seen Candaba and 1 overhead in the evening of 21st at Subic which is an addition for the area list.


Great Egret  Ardea alba

10+ at Candaba and few en-route Luzon


Intermediate Egret   Egretta intermedia

Few at Candaba Luzon.


Little Egret   Egretta garzetta

Few seen throughout the trip


Chinese Egret   Egretta eulophotes   Vulnerable (VU)

The regular spot on the coral flats on Bohol en-route to Bilar held no birds on the morning of our visit but we found 1 bird on a sandy beach/bay nearby.


Javan Pond Heron Ardeola speciosa

Candaba marsh held 1 bird. (rare on Luzon)


Cattle Egret   Bubulcus ibis

Fairly common throughout.


Striated Heron  Butorides striata

Seen on 2 dates on Bohol, total 4 birds.


Black-crowned Night-Heron   Nycticorax nycticorax

300+ in colony at Candaba and 10+ en-route Luzon on 23rd


Rufous Night-Heron   Nycticorax caledonicus

2 birds seen in flight from the car at dawn en-route to Rajah Sikatuna, Bohol.


Black Bittern Dupetor flavicollis

One flew in to a lily covered pond at Candaba to give excellent perched views. A nice one to get in Philippines as not regularly encountered on tours in the country.


Yellow Bittern   Ixobrychus sinensis

An amazing 15+ birds seen at Candaba Marsh, later also 1 seen from the car along the Luzon expressway.


Cinnamon Bittern   Ixobrychus cinnamomeus

3 birds seen at Candaba


Philippine Duck   Anas luzonica  Vulnerable (VU)   Near-endemic

Approx. 100 birds  at Candaba Marsh were a good count, some good  for great close looks. Also 1 and 8 birds seen in flight at Subic Bay.


Eurasian Teal   Anas crecca

A very scarce winterer in Philippines but we recorded 30+ birds at Candaba.  This is a higher number than we record usually on the tour.


Garganey   Anas querquedula

Also Garganey was present in good numbers at Candaba Marsh with 200+ birds.


Tufted Duck   Aythya fuligula

Only 6 birds at Candaba Marsh, down from 99 present during last year’s tour.


Barred [Steere’s] Honey-buzzard  Pernis celebensis [steerei] [Country endemic]

Pretty scarce and we got only 1 bird but then found it perched on Kitanglad for good looks, always a bonus.


Oriental Honey-buzzard   Pernis ptilorhynchus

Seen briefly on Mt.Makiling, and later this odd looking philippensis subspecies with the very rufous underparts performed on Mt.Kitanglad for great looks.


Brahminy Kite   Haliastur indus

Fairly common throughout. Also seen circling together with our ‘Eagle’… it’s so small this Kite, just tiny!


White-bellied Sea-Eagle   Haliaeetus leucogaster

A nice bonus with both an ad. and juv. perched strategically near the enormous fruit bat colony at Subic.


Philippine Serpent-Eagle   Spilornis holospilus   Country endemic

Three sightings, on Kitanglad, Bohol and Luzon. Perfect perched views at Subic and heard on Mt.Makiling.


Eastern Marsh-Harrier   Circus spilonotus

A scarce winterer in Philippines which showed very well  at Candaba Marsh and later on 1 was seen from the car on the Luzon Expressway.


Crested Goshawk   Accipiter trivirgatus

Seen twice, perched on Mt.Kitanglad and in flight at Rajah Sikatuna, Bohol.


Chinese Goshawk   Accipiter soloensis

Also 2 sightings, Mt.Makiling and Bohol.


Besra   Accipiter virgatus

The Hill 394 track at Subic held our only sighting.


Great Philippine Eagle   Pithecophaga jefferyi   Critically endangered (CR)   Country endemic

Our peaceful wait at the viewpoint on Mt.Kitanglad traditionally interrupted by excited shouts; EAGLE!!! Last year it was Danny to give alarm first, this year Carlito’s son. Last year we looked out above the forest canopy, this year we looked… UP! I’ve never seen this gigantic Eagle closer, it must have been at 30 meters distance max. circling above our heads where it suddenly appeared and stayed long enough gaining height slowly to allow for some photographs –digiscoped yep-. In fact, Carlito’s Eagle kept showing on the wing for a full 7 min. (11h45 – 11h52) until it went to perch on the forested mountain slope opposite the viewpoint.


Rufous-bellied Eagle   Aquila kienerii

A nice bonus to pick up in Philippines with rather perfect eye-level looks from the viewpoint just above Del Monte lodge. Another sighting, presumably of the same individual l(immature) from Eagle viewpoint.


Philippine Hawk-Eagle   Spizaetus philippensis   Vulnerable (VU)   Country endemic

Increasingly scarce and as was last year, we only got 1 sighting on this trip. Another good reason to visit Rajah Sikatuna on Bohol it seems…


Philippine Falconet   Microhierax erythrogenys   Country endemic

Three birds, and on our second visit to Hill 394 at Subic 2 birds on the same stake-out allowed for excellent looks.


Peregrine Falcon   Falco peregrinus

Four sightings, two different subspecies. The dark ‘ernesti’ (resident) was seen at Candaba. The light ‘calidus’ (visitor) seen in Subic twice and at the dairy farm at Los Banos – Makiling.


Red Junglefowl   Gallus gallus

Good views of  a pair at Subic, heard also at Rajah Sikatuna.


Spotted Buttonquail   Turnix ocellatus   Country endemic

No less than 5 birds seen on our first visit to the dairy farm at Los Banos. One bird didn’t just cross the track here but performed ‘on it’ for a full 5 minutes. Two birds at the same location seen on the next day.


Barred Buttonquail   Turnix suscitator

One bird seen on each visit to the dairy farm at Los Banos.


Buff-banded Rail   Gallirallus philippensis

2 birds seen on the edge of a rice paddy at Candaba, another bird from the car on SLEX


Barred Rail   Gallirallus torquatus   Near-endemic

3 birds seen Candaba, 3 on Bohol crossing the road and 1 on Cebu, heard Los Banos…


Plain Bush-hen   Amaurornis olivacea   Country endemic

Watching Spotted Buttonquails at Los Banos did the trick as 1 bird surprised us by crossing the track right in front of us.


White-breasted Waterhen   Amaurornis phoenicurus

5 at Candaba


White-browed Crake    Porzana cinerea

Candaba held birds in every corner it seemed. About 10 seen.


Purple [Philippine] Swamphen   Porphyrio porphyrio

Fewer seen at Candaba Marsh than last year but still good for 5+.  Rare in Philippines and sometimes split as Philippine Swamphen.


Common Moorhen   Gallinula chloropus

Approx. 10 birds at Candaba.


Pheasant-tailed Jacana   Hydrophasianus chirurgus

A single sighting of 1 bird at Candaba Marsh.


Greater Painted-snipe   Rostratula benghalensis

1 bird good for a couple flight views at Candaba


Oriental Pratincole   Glareola maldivarum

10+ seen at  Candaba.


Black-bellied Plover   Pluvialis squatarola

2 + 6 birds on the coral flats on Bohol.


Lesser Sandplover   Charadrius mongolus

20+ birds Bohol coral flats


Bukidnon Woodcock   Scolopax bukidnonensis   Country endemic

Traditionally recorded just about every evening and early morning at Del Monte lodge, Kitanglad. Once we went out to a nearby clearing for great flight views and at another time it showed while we had coffee at the lodge itself. Heard on plenty more occasions.


Whimbrel   Numenius phaeopus

4 + 2 birds near Tagbiliran, Bohol


Common Sandpiper   Actitis hypoleucos

Singles Bohol and Cagayan de Oro bay


Grey-tailed Tattler   Tringa brevipes

On the coral flats near Tagbiliran, Bohol, we got 2 birds on a first visit and a record count of 14! on the next.


Wood Sandpiper   Tringa glareola

5+ birds at Candaba and 1 en-route on Luzon


Ruddy Turnstone   Arenaria interpres

20+ birds on coral flats near Tagbiliran, Bohol.


Black-headed Gull   Larus ridibundus

4 seen at Cebu port after the Supercat crossing from Bohol.


White-winged Tern   Chlidonias leucopterus

Singles Candaba and Bohol.


Whiskered Tern   Chlidonias hybrida

Candaba, NLEX, Bohol, Los Banos laguna.


Common Tern   Sterna hirundo

10+ birds seen off-shore Bohol.


Island Collared-Dove   Streptopelia bitorquata

Just as last year, only 1 bird of this very scarce species seen at Candaba Marsh.


Red Collared-Dove   Streptopelia tranquebarica

10 + Candaba Marsh.


Spotted Dove   Streptopelia chinensis

Candaba, Los Banos, Bohol, Mt.Kitanglad


Philippine Cuckoo-Dove   Macropygia tenuirostris   Near-endemic

1 bird seen Kitanglad and 2 sightings at Rajah Sikatuna, Bohol, where also more birds heard.


Emerald Dove   Chalcophaps indica

5 birds total  seen at Subic and 1 at Tabunan, Cebu.


Zebra Dove   Geopelia striata

Sightings at Candaba, Kitanglad, Bohol, Subic, Makiling.


Amethyst Dove Phapitreron amethystinus   Country endemic

Photographed on Mt.Kitanglad, other birds heard.


White-eared Dove   Phapitreron leucotis   Country endemic

Regular encounters at most sites visited.


Pompadour [Philippine] Green-Pigeon   Treron pompadora [axillarus]

30+ birds entertained us at a fruiting tree with a few more birds seen at scattered locations in Subic Bay. Otherwise only heard at Rajah Sikatuna, Bohol.


Yellow-breasted Fruit-Dove   Ptilinopus occipitalis   Country endemic

At Kitanglad we got 1 bird on the 3rd, then recorded 5+ the next day on the ‘Apo Sunbird walk’.


Black-chinned Fruit-Dove   Ptilinopus leclancheri   Near-endemic

1 came in to tape at Hill 394, Subic, then we got an attractive pair on Mt.Makiling with a single seen on the last morning at Makiling and the species was regularly heard at Rajah Sikatuna.


Green Imperial Pigeon   Ducula aenea

Regular sightings on all days at Subic and a few seen on Bohol.


Guaiabero   Bolbopsittacus lunulatus   Country endemic

Lots of flowering trees made us see up to 20 birds a day at Subic incl. plenty perched. Seen once Makiling.


Mindanao Racquet-tail   Prioniturus waterstradti   Near-threatened (NT)   Country endemic

2 sightings of 1 bird  from Eagle viewpoint Kitanglad


Green Racquet-tail   Prioniturus luconensis   Vulnerable (VU)   Country endemic

This Subic speciality proved quite easy this year with good numbers and especially the good perched views were enjoyed. Day counts of exactly 5 + 1 + 10 + 2


Blue-crowned Racquet-tail   Prioniturus discurus   Country endemic

Widespread maybe but increasingly rare everywhere in Philippines. The bird that flew in at Tabunan, then perched for good looks came as a surprise. Cebu is supposed to have no forest left you know… but it seems this bird is still clinging on if not a vagrant to the island possibly from nearby Bohol or Negros. A lifer for all of us except local guides Oking and Lushela.


Blue-naped Parrot   Tanygnathus lucionensis   Near-threatened (NT)   Near-endemic

Good numbers seen at Subic only.


Philippine Hanging-Parrot   Loriculus philippensis   Country endemic

(Colasisi) Fairly common at both Subic and Mt.Kitanglad. Good to get those perched regularly!


Philippine Hawk-Cuckoo   Cuculus pectoralis   Country endemic

Two birds seen at Mt.Makiling, one at Tabunan and heard at both Kitanglad and Rajah Sikatuna.


Brush Cuckoo   Cacomantis variolosus

Heard Bohol, Tabunan and Kitanglad.


Philippine Drongo-Cuckoo   Surniculus velutinus   Country endemic

We enjoyed this delightful bird at Rajah Sikatuna where 1 allowed for prolonged looks and photos. Further on we had 2 other sightings on Bohol and heard it at Mt.Makiling where it proved unresponsive to tape at a stake-out from last year.


Asian Koel   Eudynamys scolopaceus

Seen twice at Subic where more birds heard.


Red-crested Malkoha   Phaenicophaeus superciliosus   Country endemic

We had daily sightings of this amazing Malkoha at both Subic and Mt.Makiling.


Scale-feathered Malkoha   Phaenicophaeus cumingi   Country endemic

While the Red-crested might be brilliant, this simply must be the best looking Malkoha around. We heard it first at Subic but Mt.Makiling remains the better spot to connect and we did greatly so with no less than 8 birds on our first morning. Funny enough, none were seen on the next morning session…


Rufous Coucal   Centropus unirufus   Near-threatened (NT)   Country endemic

Subic is the place for this localized and peculiar species hiding in bamboo clumps in groups of 10+ birds. We encountered a group on our first afternoon, two more the next morning and we found a group located in exactly the same spot as previous on the last morning at subic Bay.


Black-faced Coucal   Centropus melanops   Country endemic

3 sightings of this superb species at Rajah Sikatuna Protected Landscape, Bohol.


Philippine Coucal   Centropus viridis   Country endemic

3 + 2 birds seen at Subic and 2 more at Tabunan, Cebu.


Lesser Coucal   Centropus bengalensis

Heard at Candaba marsh.


Philippine Scops-Owl   Otus megalotis   Country endemic

Heard at Rajah Sikatuna, Bohol.


Mindanao Eagle-Owl   Mimizuku gurneyi    Country endemic

On the only dry evening, we heard it briefly at the lodge on Mt.Kitanglad.


Philippine Hawk-Owl   Ninox philippensis   Country endemic

Common at Subic and we got 1 bird for good views in the spotlight in no time with other birds heard nearby. Also heard Makiling.


Philippine Frogmouth   Batrachostomus septimus   Country endemic

At Del Monte lodge on Kitanglad, we used a couple dry minutes (rain!) on the first evening to spotlight 1 for good scope views.


Great Eared-Nightjar   Eurostopodus macrotis

2 birds in the clearing at Rajah Sikatuna Bohol and heard at Subic, 1 was seen on Kitanglad with more heard.


Philippine Nightjar   Caprimulgus manillensis   Country endemic

One bird at Subic for great looks in the spotlight.


Glossy Swiftlet   Collocalia esculenta

Commonly seen on Mindanao and Bohol.


Grey-rumped Swiftlet   Collocalia marginata  Country endemic

Common on Luzon- Subic, Mt.Makiling – Los Banos and Tabunan – Cebu.


Pygmy Swiftlet   Collocalia troglodytes   Country endemic

Great views (low down and with forest background) of this easy ID job at  Rajah Sikatuna, with even more brilliant views (looking down on them) from the Chocolate Hills viewpoint on Bohol, few at Tabunan also.


Philippine Swiftlet   Aerodramus mearnsi   Country endemic

Common on Mt.Kitanglad, where typically in groups and flying higher than the Glossies around.


Uniform Swiftlet   Aerodramus vanikorensis

Only a few seen, near Tagbiliran on Bohol and 1 was recorded in Cagayan.


Purple Needletail   Hirundapus celebensis   Near-endemic

3 birds seen Subic, at Hill 394


Asian Palm-Swift   Cypsiurus balasiensis

Seen on Bohol and at Tabunan.


Fork-tailed Swift   Apus pacificus

A few birds at Makiling on our last morning there.


House Swift   Apus nipalensis

20+ birds on the campus grounds at Los Banos. (while watching Indigo-banded Kingfisher)


Whiskered Treeswift   Hemiprocne comata

Daily sightings at Subic and once at Rajah Sikatuna. Not even an endemic but this little beauty usually end up as a big favourite. Consistently good for some nice photo opportunities too, which might well help touch some hearths.


Philippine Trogon   Harpactes ardens   Country endemic

Remains quite common at Rajah Sikatuna, Bohol, where we saw male and female with others heard, also heard Makiling.


Common Kingfisher   Alcedo atthis

We made it up to 9 Kingfisher species on this tour but lets start easy. 5+ at Candaba and 1 on Bohol.


Indigo-banded Kingfisher   Alcedo cyanopectus   Country endemic

Readily seen from the bridge on the university campus at Los Banos this year where 1 bird performed for looks as long as we wanted with another bird seen briefly further on the stream. Little stunner!


Silvery Kingfisher   Alcedo argentata   Vulnerable (VU)   Country endemic

Unexpectedly only seen in flight (and only by Koen) on our first visit to the river at Rajah Sikatuna, Bohol so we needed a second attempt (usually we just return for more great looks at this little gem) and still struggled but then as it flew past once more and into vegetation got it fixed in the scope to the joy of all.


Ruddy Kingfisher Halcyon coromanda

The bonus Kingfisher as not regularly encountered on this tour (or Philippines) but 1 bird had been around at Rajah Sikatuna for quite a while and we enjoyed great prolonged scope views.


White-throated Kingfisher   Halcyon smyrnensis

Few on Bohol, common Subic and 2 seen on Kitanglad.


Rufous-lored Kingfisher   Todiramphus winchelli   Vulnerable (VU)   Country endemic

Virtually the first bird seen at Rajah Sikatuna after we left the clearing for some decent forest birding. I managed to photograph a male last year so it was pretty good to have a female perform this time.


Collared Kingfisher   Todiramphus chloris

Almost daily sightings.


Spotted Wood Kingfisher   Actenoides lindsayi   Country endemic

We wasted no time… getting this first target on the first morning at Makiling. Actually we arrived a bit early on the stake-out so had to wait for some decent light to appear under the forest canopy before moving into action with the tape. Quite hard waiting indeed when birds keep calling loudly in the gloom. Then… superb scope views at the first shot.


Blue-capped Wood Kingfisher   Actenoides hombroni   Vulnerable (VU)   Country endemic

Carlito had a new stake-out near the lodge for this one. Reluctant but faithfully nevertheless left it in his hands to wait until the last morning as on the full days we had some important stuff to handle further up the mountain. (Eagle, Parrotfinch, Apo’s…) So when this last morning arrived, expectedly without much else to look for still, went on the trail and played the tape…  to no response. All right, this bird is increasingly difficult and it’s not a shame to miss it, we wouldn’t have been the first group. Play! Play he said. Play again! Carlito usually knows what he’s doing. Softly at first, then closer and more clear. Calling from the dense undergrowth, ever elusive. Keep playing! A flash and there it was! This brilliant male in full view. Briefly though as just another flash and gone. Whow. Everyone got that? Big smiles and 1 disappointed face… You know, whenever possible we take it to different lengths getting good views for everyone and it wasn’t easy. Apparently 2 Blue-capped Wood Kingfishers were around but they just didn’t play it again. One kept calling from high up, the other from dense undergrowth. Perseverance! I think half the group went back to the lodge for coffee and packing up for the walk down. Keep trying and then suddenly another good response from a bird close by. Carlito was the one to point it out again! Scope views, photographs, enjoying the superb views of a fine male perched at eye-level. “The” perfect end to another immensely successful Philippines tour deserves some more text in the trip list. Cheers!


Blue-throated Bee-eater   Merops viridis

Adding colour on every day at Subic and also the birds at the roadside colony on Mindanao en-route to Kitanglad were present again.


Blue-tailed Bee-eater   Merops philippinus

Several noted at Candaba, few on Bohol.


Dollarbird   Eurystomus orientalis

One only, at Subic Bay.


Luzon Hornbill   Penelopides manillae   Country endemic

Up to 10 birds daily at Subic and also a few daily on Mt.Makiling.


Samar Hornbill   Penelopides samarensis   Country endemic

3 birds seen on our first day at Rajah Sikatuna, Bohol with a bird each seen on the next days, also plenty more heard in the reserve.


Mindanao Hornbill   Penelopides affinis   Country endemic

Three birds seen on the first full day on Kitanglad. Heard only the next day and 2 seen again on the last morning.


Coppersmith Barbet   Megalaima haemacephala

1 birds of the 'red-headed' and endemic 'cebuensis' subspecies seen at Tabunan, Cebu. Heard at Kitanglad and several sightings at Subic and Makiling.


Philippine Woodpecker   Dendrocopos maculatus   Country endemic

Regular encounters at Subic and Makiling. Good for photos on Kitanglad.


White-bellied Woodpecker   Dryocopus javensis

This most impressive woodpecker is one of my favourites and therefore not strange I do like the birding at Subic. It’s possibly nowhere as common and easy to see. Four birds on our first afternoon, then another 3 and 2 on the next days. Heard at Rajah Sikatuna.


Greater Flameback   Chrysocolaptes lucidus

3 endemic subspecies seen; spp. montanus, 1 seen Kitanglad ; spp. rufopunctatus, 3 birds seen Bohol ; spp. haematribon, at least 15! birds seen at Subic


Sooty Woodpecker   Mulleripicus funebris   Country endemic

Another superb woodpecker and seen in good numbers at Subic, a total of 9 birds.


Visayan Broadbill   Eurylaimus samarensis   Vulnerable (VU)   Country endemic

Yep, we managed the Broadbills again. Amazingly, we found a group of them in the afternoon where we had set off on a walk with thoughts like ‘we might see something’ as usually the forest is pretty quiet after midday at Rajah Sikatuna on Bohol. It was Ryan who picked up the song first and we then got calls and bill snapping noise before 2 or 3 birds showed one by one.


Azure-breasted Pitta   Pitta steerii   Vulnerable (VU)  Country endemic

High on the wish list as ever but birds proved unusually difficult to get this year. Although Ryan told me they’d become more easy again by late March, we needed a mini off-trail expedition as no birds were calling anywhere near the trail at the time of our visit. We managed well in the end with brief but great views of 1 bird showing on a mount of dirt in the open before bouncing off back into the forest again. (Steere’s Pitta)


Barn Swallow   Hirundo rustica

Seen daily


Pacific Swallow   Hirundo tahitica

First recorded at Candaba, then also at Subic, Makiling and Bohol.


Striated Swallow  Cecropis striolata

Plenty at the dairy farm at Los Banos and also seen on Bohol.


Oriental Pipit   Anthus rufulus

Mt.Kitanglad, Makiling and Candaba.


Eastern Yellow Wagtail   Motacilla tschutschensis

50+ at Kitanglad, heard at Candaba


Grey Wagtail   Motacilla cinerea

Kitanglad  and Los Banos.


Beer-bellied Cuckoo-shrike   Coracina striata

Fairly common at Subic but also seen Makiling and Rajah Sikatuna.


Blackish Cuckoo-shrike   Coracina coerulescens   Country endemic

This Subic speciality proved easy to connect with this year. We got 2 + 2 + 4 birds.


McGregor's Cuckoo-shrike   Coracina mcgregori   Near-threatened (NT)  Country endemic

Great views, but just the 1 bird makes me worry a bit about declines at Kitanglad


Black-and-White Triller  Lalage melanoleuca

Real nice to connect with this one again at Makiling. Two birds showed well and allowed for some photos, long shots though but who doesn’t like a challenge?


Pied Triller   Lalage nigra

One seen briefly at Subic but most of us connected with it on Bohol 5+, Tabunan 5+ or Kitanglad 5+


Ashy Minivet   Pericrocotus divaricatus

A group of about 10 at Subic and 15+ at Makiling


Yellow-wattled Bulbul   Pycnonotus urostictus   Country endemic

Brief sightings at Subic and Rajah Sikatuna, plenty more heard.


Yellow-vented Bulbul   Pycnonotus goiavier

Common everywhere except Bohol where we didn’t see any.


Philippine Bulbul   Ixos philippinus   Country endemic

We didn’t score as good as last year when it was seen on every single day of the trip. This year, there was 1 day on the tour on which it was heard only. (on Bohol for the record)


Streak-breasted Bulbul   Ixos siquijorensis   Endangered (EN)   Country endemic

At Tabunan, Cebu, David only went lucky to get looks at 1 bird present.


Blue Rock-Thrush   Monticola solitarius

1 seen Subic Bay, near the airfield.


Island Thrush   Turdus poliocephalus katanglad

A real good bonus and surprise at Kitanglad was the sighting of 1 bird near the Apo Sunbird spot. It does get rarely recorded in the area and at the altitudes normally visited. Moreover, the ‘katanglad’ subspecies is endemic to central Mindanao, yes, that would be little more than the Kitanglad range itself so I guess, if we take it to subspecies level,  this must make it one of  the most range-restricted birds of the trip.


Eyebrowed Thrush   Turdus obscurus

Common also this year at Kitanglad. Time after time we kind of recorded only half the amount from the previous day though. 40+ on the first afternoon, then 20+ next day, down to 10+ and just a few on the last morning. I bet they were 5+. He he!


White-browed Shortwing   Brachypteryx montana

Skulky thing not to be compared with for example birds on Doi Inthanon where usually easy too see. A couple brief, brief glimpses until on the last morning we managed to get 1 cross the trail. A real good songster though and again here very different to what one might hear on mainland SE Asia.


Bright-capped Cisticola  Cisticola exilis

Only 1 bird seen but it showed well at the dairy farm –Los Banos. (Golden-headed Cisticola)


Zitting Cisticola   Cisticola juncidis

Heard at Candaba and seen Los Banos.


Long-tailed Ground-Warbler   Bradypterus caudatus   Country endemic

Few birds heard only on Kitanglad.


Oriental Reed-Warbler   Acrocephalus orientalis

5+ at Candaba


Rufous-headed Tailorbird   Orthotomus heterolaemus   Country endemic

2 or 3 good sightings on  Mt.Kitanglad.


Philippine Tailorbird   Orthotomus castaneiceps   Country endemic

Not always easy to get into view but 2 birds performed very well at Hill 394, Subic.


Rufous-fronted Tailorbird   Orthotomus frontalis   Country endemic

Quite a few heard at Rajah Sikatuna with 1 bird that showed in the end.


Grey-backed Tailorbird   Orthotomus derbianus   Country endemic

Heard only Makiling.


Yellow-breasted Tailorbird   Orthotomus samarensis   Near-threatened (NT)   Country endemic

A nice confiding male of this Visayas endemic for great views at Rajah Sikatuna, Bohol.


Arctic Warbler   Phylloscopus borealis

Seen twice on Makiling.


Mountain Warbler   Phylloscopus trivirgatus

Common on Mt.Kitanglad.


Philippine Leaf-Warbler   Phylloscopus olivaceus   Country endemic

Daily at Rajah Sikatuna Bohol.


Tawny Grassbird   Megalurus timoriensis

Several seen Kitanglad, Tabunan and Makiling.


Striated Grassbird   Megalurus palustris

Rather common throughout


Rufous-tailed Jungle-Flycatcher   Rhinomyias ruficauda   Near-endemic

We found 3 birds of the endemic boholensis race for good looks at Rajah Sikatuna Protected Landscape.

Rarely seen outside of the Philippines (supposed to be on Borneo) and certainly also uncommon on the islands with only Rajah Sikatuna and Picop to be spots with regular sightings.


Grey-streaked Flycatcher   Muscicapa griseisticta

Fairly common and regularly recorded throughout.


Mugimaki Flycatcher   Ficedula mugimaki

Just as we did last year on Mt.Kitanglad, got two sightings of this lovely winter visitor.


Snowy-browed Flycatcher   Ficedula hyperythra

1 bird seen on Mt.Kitanglad on our last morning


Little Pied Flycatcher   Ficedula westermanni

3 males seen Mt.Kitanglad


Mountain Verditer Flycatcher   Eumyias panayensis   Near-endemic

Plenty sightings at Mt.Kitanglad. (Island Flycatcher)


Mangrove Blue-Flycatcher   Cyornis rufigastra

1 birds at Tabunan forest, Cebu.


Oriental Magpie-Robin   Copsychus saularis

Only seen on Bohol, 5 birds total.


White-browed Shama   Copsychus luzoniensis   Country endemic

Elusive as ever. We got 1 bird fly across the road at a stake-out in Subic where it usually performs but then unexpectedly a bird along the Hill 394 track decided to show well for a chance. More heard, also on Makiling.


Black Shama   Copsychus cebuensis   Endangered (EN)   Country endemic

Rain at Tabunan forest, Cebu! It didn’t stop us to get several brief but good looks of our main target at the site though.


Pied Bushchat   Saxicola caprata

Singles at Candaba and en-route on the Subic – Tarlac expressway.


Blue Fantail   Rhipidura superciliaris   Country endemic

3 sightings at Rajah Sikatuna NP, few more heard.


Black-and-cinnamon Fantail   Rhipidura nigrocinnamomea   Country endemic

Up to 5 daily at Mt.Kitanglad. Stunner!


Fried Pantail   Rhipidura javanica

Few seen, Tabunan, Bohol, Candaba and Cagayan de Oro.


Black-naped Monarch   Hypothymis azurea

A pair at Subic and several seen in mixed flocks on Bohol.


Rufous Paradise-Flycatcher   Terpsiphone cinnamomea   Country endemic

1 bird seen on our first morning at Makiling with a second bird calling nearby


Yellow-bellied Whistler  Pachycephala philippinensis   Country endemic

Couple sightings at Kitanglad and at Rajah Sikatuna Bohol.


Striated Wren-Babbler   Ptilocichla mindanensis   Country endemic

A first encounter remained heard only but then later on we found 1 bird responsive and it showed exceptionally well, at least for this species that is.


Brown Tit-Babbler   Macronous striaticeps   Country endemic

Two sightings on Kitanglad, 1 and 5 birds respectively.


Golden-bellied Gerygone   Gerygone sulphurea

5+ seen at Subic (Flyeater)


Elegant Tit   Pardaliparus elegans   Country endemic

Three seen at Subic, 2 at Makiling, heard Tabunan and 5+ daily on Kitanglad.


White-fronted Tit   Sittiparus semilarvatus   Near-threatened (NT)   Country endemic

Always a tricky target but again managed to keep the record on not having missed it on our tours so far. They actually performed exceptionally well. First 2 birds by the roadside, then no less than 5 on the track which we watched feeding/working their way through for quite a while.


Sulphur-billed Nuthatch   Sitta oenochlamys   Country endemic

A couple sightings daily at Mt.Kitanglad, at least 11 birds total.


Stripe-sided Rhabdornis   Rhabdornis mysticalis   Country endemic

Fairly common at Subic (got 3 + 1 + 1) and also a couple sightings on Mt.Makiling.


Stripe-breasted Rhabdornis   Rhabdornis inornatus   Country endemic

The birding started slow on our first afternoon walk on Kitanglad but then one of the first goodies to appear was the Stripe-breasted. No less than 5 allowed for good looks and actually gave a false sense of being common or easy to get on the mountain. Not! I had to explain our guests that we just got very lucky to connect so quickly and indeed only 2 brief flight views was all we got later on.


Plain-throated Sunbird   Anthreptes malacensis

Plenty sightings at Mt.Makiling.


Purple-throated Sunbird   Leptocoma sperata

Not endemic but always a delight and we got 1 bird of this beautiful species for good looks on Bohol.


Olive-backed Sunbird   Cinnyris jugularis

Fairly common and seen regularly during the trip.


Grey-hooded Sunbird   Aethopyga primigenia   Country endemic

Quite a few sightings at Mt.Kitanglad.


Mount Apo Sunbird   Aethopyga boltoni   Near-threatened (NT)   Country endemic

For some reason David had set this his prime target on Mt.Kitanglad. (Not sure that was before or after the beers though, he he). Anyway, he made it up all the way on the difficult trail where located at around 1800m altitude lies the prime area to look for it. Beautiful mossy forest and good for Island Thrush and Amethyst Dove on this visit. Superb! As we did last year, we even got Mountain Shrike again which remains rather difficult on Kitanglad and it won’t get seen on every single trip. Little or no activity though and certainly no Sunbird. Lunch arrived. Birding again. I think we spent 3 hours looking and we had to set off for the long walk back to camp. Just as we did a lively feeding flock arrived so we gave it another 10 min. to scan it for the Sunbird. Nothing. Flock moved on. Then suddenly Carlito picked up the calls and little later we finally got our Sunbird. Pff.


Metallic-winged Sunbird   Aethopyga pulcherrima   Country endemic

A couple brief sightings in the clearing at  Rajah Sikatuna NP, Bohol.


Handsome Sunbird   Aethopyga bella   Country endemic

1 seen Mt. Makiling


Eastern Crimson Sunbird   Aethopyga siparaja

2 birds at Tabunan forest, Cebu


Striped Flowerpecker   Dicaeum aeruginosum   Country endemic

4 birds on Makiling. [Thick-billed Flowerpecker]


Olive-capped Flowerpecker   Dicaeum nigrilore   Country endemic

Usually common but only 4 bird seen this time on Kitanglad


Bicolored Flowerpecker   Dicaeum bicolor   Country endemic

A nice male performed in the clearing at Rajah Sikatuna.


Red-striped Flowerpecker   Dicaeum australe   Country endemic

Tabunan forest, Bohol and Makiling.


Orange-bellied Flowerpecker   Dicaeum trigonostigma

Several at Rajah Sikatuna,  Bohol.


Buzzing Flowerpecker   Dicaeum hypoleucum   Country endemic

At least 3 birds seen on Kitanglad.


Pygmy Flowerpecker   Dicaeum pygmaeum   Country endemic

1 bird seen singing from the same snag at Subic on 2 dates and 1 sighting at Makiling.


Fire-breasted Flowerpecker   Dicaeum ignipectum

Two sightings on Kitanglad.


Lowland White-eye   Zosterops meyeni   Near-endemic

Amazingly got a group of 15 birds at a stake-out in Subic and also 1 bird briefly on the Los Banos campus grounds.


Mountain White-eye   Zosterops montanus   Near-endemic

Very (extremely!) common at Mt.Kitanglad.


Mindanao White-eye   Lophozosterops goodfellowi   Country endemic

3 birds total seen on higher reaches of Mt.Kitanglad. Also called Black-masked White-eye.


Cinnamon Ibon   Hypocryptadius cinnamomeus   Country endemic

Up to 10+ birds seen daily at Kitanglad. Lovely birds.


White-lored Oriole   Oriolus albiloris   Country endemic

Toughest of the Subic specialities to get but we did even better than the good looks from last year. This time the bird stayed around for ages and indeed allowed for a couple decent photographs. Useful as there’s not that many of those around I reckon.


Black-naped Oriole   Oriolus chinensis

Seen Kitanglad but especially common at Subic.


Philippine Fairy-bluebird   Irena cyanogastra   Country endemic

Again only seen at Rajah Sikatuna this year.


Brown Shrike   Lanius cristatus

common throughout and seen daily


Long-tailed Shrike   Lanius schach

Candaba, Los Banos, Kitanglad.


Mountain Shrike   Lanius validirostris   Near-threatened (NT)   Country endemic

We did it again! A single bird for great looks on the high trail at Mt.Kitanglad.


Balicassiao   Dicrurus balicassius   Country endemic

1 bird of the white-bellied 'mirabilis' spp. at Tabunan forest, common (balicassius) at Subic and Makiling.


Spangled Drongo   Dicrurus bracteatus

Plenty at Rajah Sikatuna on Bohol.


White-breasted Woodswallow   Artamus leucorynchus

Rather common throughout.


Large-billed Crow   Corvus macrorhynchos

common at Subic, also Makiling and Cagayan.


Asian Glossy Starling   Aplonis panayensis

Subic, Bohol, Tabunan, Caganyan. The roost in Tagbiliran on Bohol at full strength (10000+) providing the usual spectacle in the evening on the town square.


Short-tailed Starling   Aplonis minor   Near-endemic

Worryingly few at Kitanglad with only 2 + 3 birds seen.


Apo Myna   Basilornis mirandus   Near-threatened (NT)   Country endemic

Excellent to get 10+ birds on both full days on Kitanglad


Coleto  Sarcops calvus   Country endemic

Up to 10 daily at Subic and a few at Rajah Sikatuna, Bohol. A superb endemic.


Crested Myna   Acridotheres cristatellus

Numbers increased at Subic of this introduced species. Around 20 birds present now near the airfield.


Eurasian Tree Sparrow   Passer montanus

Missed this one for 2 full days on Kitanglad. Euhh.


Red-eared Parrotfinch   Erythrura coloria   Near-threatened (NT)   Country endemic

A much better performance than usual. Great scope views for as long as we wanted and good for a couple decent although still distant shots.


Scaly-breasted Munia   Lonchura punctulata

A few at Los Banos.


White-bellied Munia   Lonchura leucogastra

Another addition for the Subic site list (1 bird seen). Four seen on Bohol and 5+ incl. nesting activity at Tabunan, few on Kitanglad.


Chestnut Munia   Lonchura atricapilla

fairly common


White-cheeked Bullfinch   Pyrrhula leucogenis   Country endemic

Scope views of 1 bird on Kitanglad near Eagle viewpoint. Later also 7 seen in flight and a few more heard.



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