Frogmouths are undeniably some of the most bizarre birds with their wide bill, frog-like gape and seemingly oversized eyes – all believed to be adaptations to hunt insects in the dark. Another feature in this category is the abundance of large bristles clustered around the base of the bill, clearly visible in this wonderful close-up of a Philippine Frogmouth by Rich Lindie. One of two species of frogmouth endemic to the island nation, these extraordinary birds are high on the target list of any visiting birder, especially those wishing to collect the world’s 16 frogmouth species. With over 200 other endemic bird species, this frogmouth certainly isn’t the only reason to pay a birding visit to the Philippine Islands, though it is certainly a highlight. Add to this that the Philippines is home to some of the world’s most rapidly disappearing forests, as well as an exceptionally high number of disappearing birds, and you have a destination that should be high on every birder’s bucket list right now.
Our tour to the Philippine archipelago targets not only the wonderful frogmouth but also specials like the Philippine Eagle, Philippine Serpent Eagle, Giant Scops Owl, Philippine Hawk-Owl, Philippine Hawk-Cuckoo, Scale-feathered and Red-crested Malkhoa, Spotted Wood Kingfisher, Azure-breasted and Red-bellied Pitta, Philippine Trogon and the gorgeous Palawan Peacock Pheasant. By visiting just the three largest islands in the region (Luzon, Palawan and Mindanao), you stand excellent chances at all of these incredible birds plus many more.
For an even greater haul of endemics, our Visayan Island Extension visits the smaller islands of Cebu, Bohol and Negros, targeting such goodies as Visayan Hornbill, Visayan Broadbill, Northern Silvery Kingfisher, Cebu Hawk-Owl and Negros Striped Babbler.
The Philippines – Endangered Endemics (01 – 19 May 2016 (19 days) US$5,300 per person sharing)
The Philippines – Visayan Island Extension (19 – 24 May 2016 (6 days) US$1,800 per person sharing)
Philippines Highlights (25 May – 03 Jun 2016 (10 days) US$3,450 per person sharing)