By Mike Lu and Bayani Barcenas
September 1 – Birdwatch Philippines Community FB page Anniversary
September 1, 2021 marked the first anniversary of Birdwatch Philippines Community (BPC), a Facebook public group set up and moderated by volunteers of the Wild Bird Club of the Philippines. With BPC, the birdwatching experience has become more accessible and sharing of photographs, videos, experiences, and discussions help more people, both newcomers and veterans become part of the virtual birding community during the pandemic. BPC also reached a membership milestone of 3,000 just a few days before its birthday.
September 4 – Kapihan Highway 2000 & Waterbirds ID Review
It’s the most wonderful time of the year (for birders that is) –MIGRATION SEASON! An area along Highway 2000 in Taytay was the flavor of the month for some birders, so this experience was shared in the Kapihan. The highlight is a patch that had Black Bitterns sitting out in the open rather than lurking in vegetation and numbering to as many as six!
September 18 – Kapihan Waterbirds ID Review Part 2
This Kapihan served as a follow up to the waterbird ID sharing session which started on September 4. Identifying shorebirds and waterbirds is difficult, no matter the species, no matter the time of year. It is a challenge and even an expert birder can be mistaken. Club members continue to share some of the most helpful shorebirds/waterbirds ID tips they picked up along the way, with Dr. Carmela “Lala” Española talking through some side-by-side comparisons of our most common, yet confusing to ID, winter visitors.
September 25 – 14th Philippine Birdtual Festival volunteers meeting
With moderators assigned and speakers invited, the organizers of the 14th Philippine Birdtual Festival met up with volunteers for a briefing and to answer queries about responsibilities during the conduct of the online festival. Joining the meeting were Padma Perez and Carissa Pobre of AGAM also joined the meeting to brief the club volunteers about their session where they invited authors of 3 bird-themed books (short stories, poetry and field guide) to share their thoughts about their work.
September 28 – TV guesting on ABS CBN’s G Diairies
Mike Lu was featured on the World Changers portion on season 2 episode 6 of G Diaries, the travel and lifestyle television program created by ABS-CBN Foundation which features destinations throughout the Philippines as an effort to support ecotourism. The interview focused on how the club started and its activities such as guided birdwatching trips and bird festivals to raise environmental awareness through birdwatching.
September 29 – Radio guesting on Radyo Pilipinas Lucena
Philippine Birdtual Festival organizers Mike Lu, Cristina Cinco and Jops Josef were invited to the radio show Layag Mimaropa on Radyo Pilipinas Lucena (DWLC 1017 kHz AM) to promote the club and the upcoming bird festival. In the 30-minute episode entitled Usapang Ibon, radio host Leonie Algire asked about birdwatching and the activities of the Club highlighting the upcoming 14th Philippine Birdtual Festival. The program also tackled migratory birds and the Asian Waterbird Census with specific focus on the RAMSAR site Naujan Lake in Mimaropa.