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Mag-alambak, Dalaguete, Cebu
October 29, 2006
7:15am to 1:00pm
Trip report and bird list by Mads Bajarias
All photos by Bobby Kintanar

Mag-alambak is halfway between the poblacion of Dalaguete and the upland town of Mantalongon (which in the last few years have been heavily hyped as the "vegetable basket" of Cebu.

Old-timers remember Mantalongon as one of the places where Cebuano lowlanders fled Imperial Japanese troops. Allied propaganda had painted the Japanese troops as bloodthirsty devils so when their advanced team came to town riding bicycles in broad daylight, a few residents who didn't flee for the hills, didn't know what to think of this invading army.

 


In the 70s, orchids were still common at appropriate elevation and sport-hunters looked for long-tailed macaques.


Nowadays, Mag-alambak is one of the few forest patches remaining in the area. Its been touted to be a reforestation area of the DENR but I don't know what sort of protection the habitat receives as land claimants continue to build houses on one hand and vegetable farms are widening on the other.

Everett's White-eye
Everett's White-eye
 
A pair of Pied Trillers
A pair of Pied Trillers
Last time I visited, land claimants had erected houses on one side of the stream that runs parallel to my short birding trail. Today, when I arrived at 7am, I was greeted by the sound of an axe chopping wood. As I entered the trail, the chopping stopped; to one side of the trail, I saw a freshly-felled tree. I knew that the wood-chopper was hiding behind a large limestone boulder by the trail (he's probably just a child told by his parents to get firewood).

When I enter a side-trail, I expected the chopping to resume but it didn't. Philippine bulbuls were noisy and active among the fruiting trees.
 
I lucked on a perched Philippine Cuckoo-Dove. I spent the time examining each bulbul and flowerpecker, hoping to chance on a Streak-breasted Bulbul and a Cebu Flowerpecker. I didn't find one.

The Crimson Sunbirds were also out in pairs and quite vocal.

1. Chinese Goshawk (Accipiter soloensis) - 1 perched
2. Philippine Cuckoo-Dove (Macropygia tenuirostris) - 1 perched
3. Glossy Swiftlet (Collocalia esculenta) - 5
4. Pygmy Swiftlet (Collocalia troglodytes) - 2
5. Coppersmith Barbet (Megalaima haemacephala) - 1 seen, more heard
6. Pied Triller (Lalage nigra) - 2
7. Philippine Bulbul (Hypsipetes philippinus) - c.70
8. Elegant Tit (Parus elegans) - 15
9. Oriental Magpie-Robin (Copsychus saularis) - 1

Red-keeled Flowerpecker.
Red-keeled Flowerpecker
10. Pied Bushchat (Saxicola caprata) - 2
11. Arctic Warbler (Phylloscopus borealis) - 5
12. Grey-streaked Flycatcher (Muscicapa griseisticta) - 1
13. Black-naped Monarch (Hypothymis coelestis) - 8
14. Brown Shrike (Lanius cristatus) - 2
15. Asian Glossy Starling (Aplonis panayensis) - 4
16. Olive-backed Sunbird (Nectarinia jugularis) - 1 male
17. Crimson Sunbird (Aethopyga siparaja) - at least 6 pairs
18. Red-keeled Flowerpecker (Dicaeum australe) - 12
19. Everett's White-eye (Zosterops everetti) - 12