17 - 20
by Mads Bajarias and Lu-Ann Fuentes
and I spent Holy Week with our three friends in Coron, Palawan.
Coron town is in the island of Busuanga; this is not to be
confused with Coron Island where the famous Cayangan and Barracuda
Lakes are found.
Coron town we stayed in a resort called KokosNuss owned and
operated by the amiable father-and-son Rudolph and Jorg Wieh.
The resort is a quiet garden planted with fruit trees. Near
the entrance, the owners also rigged a bird bath with water
flowing from a faucet. The starlings hang out right over the
the resort is an airstrip flanked by scrub and a few trees.
When i write "airstrip" below, I mean the scrub and forest
flanking the airstrip and not the actual runway. I'm sure
that the scrub there harbors big super-skulkers that I missed.
It's a place definitely worth further investigation. Also
saw 2 quails there but couldn't ID them. Lots of calls too,
quite low in the thick brush
morning, I got up at daybreak to view the birds in the garden
i.e. the garden of KokosNuss Resort. It was only on Saturday,
April 19, that I got to explore the airstrip. I birded the
airstrip for 3 hours in the morning of Saturday.
Egret -- c.10. farm near road going to KYR airport.
Sea-eagle. Saw 1 fly away from island with white-collared
Kingfisher -- 2 very large ones in an
island whose name I forget which flew away with the White-bellied
Bee-eater -- 2. on Mt. Tapyas. curiously, this species is not
listed in Busuanga by Kennedy etal. but we saw 2 plain as day.
Swallow -- c.10. All over busuanga
6. Barn Swallow -- 1. on Mt. Tapyas, Coron town, Busuanga.
Bulbul -- c.12. Conspicuous at the airstrip. This is welcome
relief from all the Philippine Bulbuls of Luzon!
Shama -- Saw a pair one morning inside the garden, perched on
a mango tree branch. As I fumbled with my decades-old Nikon,
they disappeared. I never saw them again.
Tailorbird -- 3. airstrip. easy to spot. Palawan endemic.
10. Yellow-throated Leafbird -- 3 in the vicinity of the airstrip.
At first I thought they were parrots because of the color. Bright
yellow throat easy to see. Palawan endemic. They made my day!
Drongo. Long tail flared and forked. Every morning about a dozen.
they like to perch on the top of the "kondol" tree. Both garden
Fantail -- 4 around the airstrip.
Black-naped Monarch -- 3 at the airstrip.
crow -- 2 at airstrip.
Glossy Starling. Lots every morning. Showy and very busy both
at the airstrip and the garden. There were also scores of them
in the KYR airport.
Woodswallow -- 2. perched in the scrub in a tiny island called
Pamalican near North Cay Island. Our local guide said this tiny
island also has "katala" (Philippine Cockatoo), but i'm not
sure. I also encountered a lone plover there but couldnt make
out the markings.
17. Brown Shrike. -- 3. airstrip and at the KYR airport
Sunbird (aurora race) -- c. 10-20 every morning. when the sun
hits the trees they make quite a racket! this palawan race has
the male's upper breast washed with red below the metallic blue.
19. Lovely Sunbird. Spotted 1 at the airstrip. Sure to be more.
It IS lovely indeed.
20. White-bellied Munia -- 2. airstrip.