Menu Close

Kapihan 2020

By Gwen So

After finding out that my favorite childhood feathered friend – a Kingfisher – exists in the Philippines and isn’t just found in America,it started an obsession to know more about birds and identify them all by name.  Easier said than done.  A lot of species look alike so you need to be aware of the minutest details.  I purchased the required books, spent many hours scouring the internet for more information, and discovered something very important:  Nothing beats asking birders, especially those who have been at it a long time.

Case in point, Yellow Bittern vs Cinnamon Bittern.  The nomenclature is not reliable I was told.  Sometimes Yellow Bitterns have reddish hues and the Cinnamon Bittern can be yellowish so color is not THE distinguishing mark.  About 4 hours later and nothing concrete from my books nor Google, I decided to check out an FB bird group.   This was where I found the answer from an expert:  the IRIS!  The YB has a round iris while CB has a bar-shaped one.  My delirious AHA moment though was overshadowed by the realization I could have been more productive had this tidbit been more readily available.

Being a member of the Wild Bird Club of the Philippines, I got to know like-minded people.  I wasn’t the only one who would lose sleep obsessing about an unidentified bird or whose mind goes around in circles trying to figure out why Desmond Allen proclaimed it was a juvenile Striated Heron instead of a Black-crowned Night Heron or how Amado knew it was a Red-necked stint without the red.  Thus was conceived the idea to have a Bird Kapihan once a month.   A few newbie club members would get together each assigned a topic to share with the rest and then maybe in the future we could ask senior birders to be guest speakers.   However, our passion to get this event going was no match for life’s daily grind so the plan never came to fruition.

Months passed.  I had been birding almost all weekends for more than a year and in the first quarter of 2020 even added weekday morning birding stints as well.  Then Covid 19 rears its ugly head and everything grinds to a halt.  Well, birdwatching is healthy, I say.  We venture outdoors getting more than enough doses of Vitamin D, walking is great cardio, and social distancing is totally doable …  that is, until a special bird pops us causing everyone to assume the Birder’s Huddle yikes.  However, the right thing to do is to heed the call to shelter in place.

One quarantine day, expat club member Mr Ravi Iyengar informs me he is going to introduce our country and avian biodiversity to his birder friends back in India via a Zoom webinar. What a great idea!  My thoughts drifted back to the Kapihan that never was.   By this time I was becoming sad and desperate because I had three out-of-town trips slated and they are all on hold, and everything is up in the air as to when we can resume birding.  I miss the birds and the birders!!!   Hmm, people ain’t goin’ anywhere that’s for sure so maybe another crack at it is warranted. 

This time though it is no longer bird identification but virtual birding.  The speaker can be any birder who has gone to a certain hotspot.  Then through a narrative, he shares with the participants how to get there, level of difficulty, expected birds, and spices up the narration with behind the scenes anecdotes, sob stories or tales of horror.  There is a plethora of birding sites in our country to choose from but looking for the story teller was another matter.   A long time ago I used to teach in Speechpower and one of the courses I handled was Public Speaking.  I would wager that despite the passage of time and the shift to a digital platform, the fear of public speaking would still occupy one of the top three things most people fear.

“I’m shy.”

 “I’m not a teacher.”

 “I’m not good talking to people.”

“I don’t bird that often anymore.”

“There are other people better than me.”

Shy?  Imagine your audience naked or stare at the tops of their heads.  We’re on Zoom for goodness sakes!  The bad internet connection will blur everybody anyway and there’s no eye contact happening to cause distraction.  Not an educator? Not good at talking?  This isn’t a lecture.  All one has to do is regale his or her listeners with an account of one’s birding experience.  We all have stories to tell. 

So I finally found a speaker, a topic, a schedule, and a Zoom host (Ms. Carmel Eje) for a series of trial runs.  A few days before the date, our speaker begged off but the show must go on so we started our first webinar with a bird rescue discussion.  It was a fruitful session and was a joyous reunion among birding buddies as well.   I had to find more speakers and when you are patient enough to accept rejection after rejection (reasons as cited above) but keep on keeping on, you eventually get rewarded with a YES.

The buena mano virtual tour was Palawan courtesy of environmental scientist Erickson Tabayag.  Throughout his talk there were “wows” interspersed with tortured groans and moans especially from those who haven’t birded there yet.

Next dry run was supposed to be Davao with Asec Robby Alabado but work made him unavailable so at the last minute we went to PICOP  with star birding couple Adrian and Trinket Constantino leading the way.  Groans as usual were elicited with many dreaming of the Celestial Monarch that night.  The sad plight of PICOP was also tackled causing some of the participants to panic and plan for a 2021 trip despite the uncertainty of life.

 Next story teller was someone who suddenly caved in under the pressure of my nagging – Amado Bajarias Jr with tech support provided by Lu-Ann Bajarias – who took us to Cebu and Bohol. 

Next trip was Davao not just with Asec Alabado but he got super birder Pete Simpson to be his co-sharer! By this time I had come to the conclusion that some of us have a streak of masochism as we subject ourselves to this weekly torment … but it is better than nothing!  Where to next?  Who else wants to inflict pleasurable pain on themselves?  😛


  1. takipci satın al

    The very next time I read a blog, Hopefully it doesn’t disappoint me as
    much as this one. After all, I know it was my choice to read,
    but I truly thought you would have something helpful to say.
    All I hear is a bunch of whining about something that you could possibly
    fix if you weren’t too busy seeking attention.

  2. instagram takipçi satın al

    Greetings I am so grateful I found your blog
    page, I really found you by error, while I was researching on Aol for something else, Anyways I am
    here now and would just like to say thanks a lot for a marvelous post and a all round enjoyable blog (I also
    love the theme/design), I don’t have time to browse it all at
    the minute but I have bookmarked it and also included your
    RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read a great deal more, Please do keep
    up the awesome work.

  3. Penetration Testing

    Hey There. I found your blog using msn. This is a really well written article.
    I will make sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful information. Thanks for the post.
    I’ll definitely comeback.

  4. Luca

    Everything posted made a ton of sense. But, think on this, suppose you added a little content?
    I am not saying your information is not good, but suppose
    you added a post title to possibly get people’s attention? I mean Kapihan 2020 – Wild Bird Club of the Philippines is
    kinda plain. You could glance at Yahoo’s front
    page and note how they create article headlines to get people
    to open the links. You might try adding a video or a pic or two to grab people interested
    about everything’ve got to say. In my opinion, it would
    bring your website a little livelier.

  5. instagram begeni satin al

    Do you have a spam problem on this blog; I also am a blogger, and I was wondering your situation; many of us have developed some nice methods and we are looking to trade
    methods with others, please shoot me an email if interested.

  6. Rick

    Fantastic goods from you, man. I have understand your stuff
    previous to and you’re just too excellent. I actually like what you have acquired here, certainly like what you are
    stating and the way in which you say it. You make it enjoyable and you still care for to keep it wise.
    I can’t wait to read much more from you. This is actually a great website.

  7. Stella

    Does your site have a contact page? I’m having a tough time locating
    it but, I’d like to shoot you an email. I’ve got some recommendations for your blog you might
    be interested in hearing. Either way, great site and I look forward to seeing it expand over time.

  8. Willis

    You really make it seem so easy with your presentation however
    I in finding this topic to be really something that I feel I’d never understand.
    It seems too complex and extremely wide for me.
    I’m having a look ahead to your subsequent submit, I will attempt to get the dangle
    of it!

  9. Days Of Our Lives Spoilers

    Today, I went to the beachfront with my children. I found a sea shell and gave it to my
    4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She put the
    shell to her ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear.
    She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is entirely off topic but I had
    to tell someone!

  10. Junkyards

    Hello there! I could have sworn I’ve been to this blog before but after reading through some of the post I realized it’s new to me.
    Nonetheless, I’m definitely glad I found it and I’ll
    be book-marking and checking back frequently!

  11. candles

    I blog often and I truly thank you for your information. This great article has really peaked my interest.
    I’m going to bookmark your site and keep checking for new
    details about once a week. I subscribed to your RSS feed too.

  12. USA people search

    I am really impressed along with your writing skills and also with the layout in your weblog.

    Is this a paid topic or did you customize it
    yourself? Anyway keep up the excellent quality writing, it is rare to see a nice
    weblog like this one these days..

  13. Custom 18650 battery pack

    Hello There. I discovered your weblog using msn. That is an extremely
    neatly written article. I’ll be sure to bookmark it and
    return to read extra of your helpful info. Thank you for the post.
    I’ll definitely return.

  14. Pingback:Google

  15. 레플리카

    I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here.
    The sketch is tasteful, your authored material stylish. nonetheless,
    you command get got an edginess over that you wish be delivering the following.
    unwell unquestionably come more formerly again since exactly
    the same nearly very often inside case you shield this increase.

  16. Renato

    Hello there! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a
    team of volunteers and starting a new initiative in a community in the same
    niche. Your blog provided us valuable information to work on.
    You have done a outstanding job!

  17. Elliot

    I always used to study article in news papers but now as I am a user of web thus from now I am using net for articles, thanks to web.

  18. Venetta

    Hello! Do you use Twitter? I’d like to follow you if that would be
    okay. I’m absolutely enjoying your blog and look forward to new

  19. instagram takipçi satın al

    Do you mind if I quote a few of your articles as long as I provide credit and sources back
    to your site? My blog is in the exact same area of interest as yours and my visitors would definitely benefit from some
    of the information you present here. Please let me know if this alright with you.
    Many thanks!

  20. instagram takipçi satın al

    I feel that is among the most important information for me.
    And i am glad reading your article. But want to remark on few general issues, The
    website taste is perfect, the articles is really excellent : D.
    Good activity, cheers

  21. Headphones for kids

    Hey! This post could not be written any better!
    Reading through this post reminds me of my old room mate!
    He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this page to him.
    Fairly certain he will have a good read. Thanks for sharing!


    Hey! I understand this is kind of off-topic however I needed to
    ask. Does building a well-established website such as yours take
    a large amount of work? I am completely new to running a blog however I do
    write in my journal on a daily basis. I’d like to start a
    blog so I can share my personal experience and views online.
    Please let me know if you have any kind of ideas or tips for
    brand new aspiring bloggers. Thankyou!

  23. Charolette

    With havin so much written content do you ever run into any issues of
    plagorism or copyright infringement? My website has a lot of exclusive content I’ve either written myself or outsourced but it seems a lot of it is popping it up all over the web without my authorization. Do you
    know any solutions to help stop content from being stolen? I’d truly
    appreciate it.

  24. Early Baby Gender Prediction Test

    I do accept as true with all of the concepts you’ve offered for your
    post. They are really convincing and will certainly work.
    Still, the posts are very short for newbies. May just you please
    lengthen them a little from next time? Thank you for the post.

  25. Lois

    I wanted to thank you for this very good read!!
    I definitely loved every little bit of it. I have you bookmarked to check
    out new things you post…


    I know this if off topic but I’m looking into starting my own blog and was curious what all is required to get set up?
    I’m assuming having a blog like yours would cost a pretty penny?
    I’m not very internet smart so I’m not 100% certain. Any
    tips or advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you

  27. iNstagram takipçi satın al

    Hey this is kind of of off topic but I was wondering if blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you have to manually code with HTML.
    I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding skills so
    I wanted to get guidance from someone with experience.
    Any help would be enormously appreciated!

  28. Party Wall Surveyors

    Does your blog have a contact page? I’m having trouble locating it but, I’d like to shoot you
    an email. I’ve got some suggestions for your blog you might be interested in hearing.

    Either way, great blog and I look forward
    to seeing it improve over time.

  29. Cryptocurrency exchange

    I’m extremely pleased to uncover this page. I need to to
    thank you for your time due to this wonderful read!!
    I definitely liked every little bit of it and I have you saved as a favorite to check out new
    information in your site.


    Hi there! Quick question that’s entirely off topic.
    Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly?

    My web site looks weird when browsing from my iphone 4. I’m trying to find a theme or plugin that might be able to fix this problem.
    If you have any suggestions, please share. With thanks!

  31. Antalya duvar kağıdı

    I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme.
    Did you create this website yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you?
    Plz respond as I’m looking to design my own blog and would
    like to find out where u got this from. many thanks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *