Edited by Arne Erik Jensen
Records from the northern part of the Philippines include 21 Calayan Rail Gallirallus calayanensis heard and spotted on 16 May on Calayan Island, Cagayan (CP). The Demoiselle Crane Grus virgo reported for the previous period was observed again on 18 May on Calayan Island, Babuyan Islands, Cagayan. Sadly, it was killed by local youths later the same month (CP).
Among the rare migrants is the country’s fifth Brambling Fringilla montifringilla, seen on Itbayat Island, Batanes on 26 March (RA). The remote island province also produced two Silky Starling Sturnus sericeus on 27 March at Batan Island and a Hoopoe Upupa epops on the same day (VB). Hoopoes were also reported from Palaui Island, Cagayan on 6 April (AA) and the Wack Wack Golf and Country Club, Metro Manila on 19 September (ET). Single Chinese Pond-Herons in breeding plumage were observed in Las Pinas, Metro Manila on 13 April (TR) and in Candaba Marsh, Pampanga on 2 April (CP).
The little known Miniature Tit-Babbler Micromacronus leytensis was documented in April at the Zamboanga Watershed, Zamboanga for the first time (TF). A week-long avifauna inventory from 26 April to 2 May on Mt. Isarog, Camarines Sur yielded a number of rare and threatened species, including two Spotted Imperial-Pigeon Ducula carola, one Luzon Bleeding-heart Gallicolumba luzonica, one Philippine Eagle-Owl Bubo philippensis, and two Rabor’s Wren-Babbler Napothera rabori (MV).
More than 21,000 adult seabirds were counted from 12 to 16 May on the Tubbataha Reefs, Palawan (AJ). This is the highest count result ever from these tiny islets. The breeding population included 1,072 Red-footed Booby Sula sula, 1,438 Brown Booby Sula leucogaster, 4,670 Great Crested Tern Sterna bergii, 5,474 Sooty Tern Sterna fuscata, 1,420 Brown Noddy Anous stolidus, and 7,049 individuals of the endemic subspecies of Black Noddy Anous minutus. Other seabirds reported for the period were 10 Bridled Tern Sterna anaethetus between Coron Island and Pamalican Island, Palawan on 18 April (PS), 300 breeding Black-naped Terns Sterna sumatrana on 28 May at Hundred Islands, Pangasinan (CP) and the first Palawan record of Black-tailed Gull Larus crassirostris, documented near Rasa Island (SP).
Raptor migration along the Sierra Mountains east of Manila was observed on different dates with a peak count of 3,512 individuals at Tanay, Rizal on 3 April including 2,792 Chinese Goshawk Accipiter soloensis and 215 Grey-faced Buzzard Butastur indicus.
Anthony Arbias (AA), Arne Jensen (AJ), Alex Loinaz (AL), Christian Perez (CP), Ely Teehankee (ET), Peter Stevens (PS), Mark Villa (MV), Rey Sta. Ana (RA), Timothy Fisher (TF), Somkiat Pakapinyo (SP), Tonji Ramos (TR) and Valeriano Borja (VB).