The next time you’re walking along the streets of Manila, look up. See those birds that fly so fast and recklessly? You can actually find them everywhere and are as common as the little brown maya, but since they’re always swerving in the air, diving down, going in circles, and never seeming to stop, most people don’t know what they are.

They’re called Swallows! Picture here is the Pacific Swallow (Hirundo tahitica). They have a reddish-brownish-orangeish throat, and a dark blue head and body that almost seems to shine. These creatures feeds on insects so that they don’t become pests for us humans. 

Swallows are just a few of the 600+ birds in the Philippines. Time to go exploring.

If you want to learn more about Philippine wildlife, then we’d love to have you with us during our next nature walk! Be a Haribon Member and see what you can do: www.haribon.org.ph/index.php/working-with-people/membership

Photo by Kdon Galay


Take a look, this isn’t your usual maya.

At first glance, these birds look exactly like the common brown maya or Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus) that can be seen perched on electric lines, houses, and even street signs of every city and town in the country. 

Take a closer look and you’ll see it’s an entirely different species.

For starters, its butt is yellow. That is actually how they got to be named as Yellow Vented Bulbuls (Pycnonotus goiavier), and yes, there’s a whole family of birds called Bulbuls. These fruit-loving creatures hang out most often near native trees that bear small fruits, they’re primary diet, such as Bignai.

If you’re observant enough, you can even see a hint of a mohawk on their heads. #walalang

This is only one of more than 600 species of birds we have in the Philippines. Help us make sure their habitat won’t disappear by becoming an official Haribon Member. Visit us at www.haribon.org.ph/index.php/working-with-people/membership and sign up to be a Member today.

Photos by Ed Tiotuyco and Luke Imbong.


"Who dat??"

Our surprised looking friend here is one of the 7 subspecies of Hawk-Owls that can only be found in the Philippines. This guy was tagged, measured, and released right after by Haribon biologists during a biological survey in the Central Panay Mountain Range, Panay Island as part of a project to protect their remaining forests and wildlife.

Owls are nighttime predators whose feathers are designed to muffle the sound of them swooping down on their unsuspecting prey. They’re practically ninjas: rodents become food before they even know what’s happening.

The Philippine Hawk Owl (Ninox philippensis) is just one of more than 600 species of birds we have that contribute towards a healthy ecosystem. Let’s not let them disappear by protecting their habitat.

We need your help to reach and protect more sites, species, and communities. To find out how you can contribute for our programs (and see Hawk-Owls for yourself), visit our website at www.haribon.org.ph/index.php/working-with-people/membership.


Photo by David Quimpo



If you’ve ever heard that sound (like a high pitched hammer hitting a nail) before, then you’ve probably just encountered the Coppersmith Barbet (Megalaima haemacephala). Because of their bright red forehead and chest, gray streaked body, and their funny birdcall, they remind us of clowns dressed up to entertain.

What they provide is no joke, however. As fruit eating animals, they contribute to the growth of trees by scattering seeds about. Without them and their other fruit lovin’ family members, our already disappearing forests would have no hope to spread.

Oh, have we mentioned this can be found all over Manila and other cities in the Philippines? Plant a bunch of native trees (not Mahogany please!) and they might just drop by.

The Haribon Foundation needs your help secure the forest habitat of the Coppersmith Barbet and countless other species. Be a Haribon Member to get educated on the state of the Philippine Environment and witness amazing creatures for yourself. Head on over to www.haribon.org.ph/index.php/working-with-people/membership to start doing your part.

Photos by Ed Tiotuyco, Kdon Galay, and Luke Imbong.


Empty plastic bottle = 3-IN-1 household “appliance”!

What do you do in your home to keep our world clean? Post a photo and tag us with @goharibon and #‎ecoako!

A study has found that the Philippines is the 3rd worst contributor of plastic into the ocean. With the country noted as the center of the center of marine shore fish biodiversity, this is a problem.

It’s time to go eco!