Have you ever seen this many birds gathered at just one location?
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)-Bicol regional office reported Tuesday, Feb. 17 that over 10,000 waterbirds were sighted at the various identified sites during the recently conducted Annual Asian Waterbird Census.
“Out of the 10,000 waterbirds, 7,000 of mixed flock of Northern Shoveler (Spatula clypeata) and a flock of Black-winged Stilts (Himantopus himantopus) waterbirds were sighted at the three sites at Cabusao Critical Habitat at Cabusao, Camarines Sur,” DENR-Bicol said in a statement.
Meanwhile, 2,092 and 366 waterbirds were identified at the Chico Island Wildlife Sanctuary and Naro Island Wildlife Sanctuary, respectively.
The migratory bird species counted there included Grey Herons, Little Heron, Little Egret, Rufous Night Heron, Great Egret, Chinese Egret, Intermediate Egret, Grey Tailed Tattler, Common Redshank, Grey Plover, Greater Sand Plover, Whimbrel, Bar Tailed Godwit, and Whiskered Tern.
The regional office’s technical team also observed a total of 172 waterbirds at Mercedes Critical Habitat in Mercedes, Camarines Norte.
“However, a notable decrease in number of waterbirds was observed in Cabusao, Camarines Sur this year due to the successive typhoons that hit the province,” DENR-Bicol noted.
It said that a total of 140 waterbirds were spotted at Juban Wetland Critical Habitat in Juban, Sorsogon, while 37 waterbirds were seen at Prieto Diaz Wetlands. “The validation recorded some noteworthy species such as the presence of the vulnerable species Philippine Duck (Anas luzonica) and a possible new regional record of the migrant species Great Carmorant (Phalacrocorax carbo),” the agency added.
The Annual Asian Waterbird Census was spearheaded by the DENR with the help of the Conservation and Development Division (CDD) through its Protected Area Management and biodiversity Conservation Section (PAMBCS) team.
The census is conducted every second and third week of January. It is simultaneously held with other international censuses of waterbirds in Africa, Europe, and Neotropics under the umbrella of the International Waterbird Census.