Himalayan Griffon Vulture
Copyright © 2019 by Ali Bernie Buga-ay, all rights reserved. Himalayan Griffon Vulture: this photograph
Joys of Birding
Barn Owls
Copyright © 2019 by Ali Bernie Buga-ay, all rights reserved. Barn Owl (juveniles): this photograph
Joys of Birding
0 5 mins
Joys of Birding
Phuket, Thailand
Nikon D500 + Nikkor 200-500mm f/5.6E ED VR
Conservation Status: Near Threatened
By / Editor
Copyright © 2019 by Ali Bernie Buga-ay, all rights reserved. Himalayan Griffon Vulture: this photograph may not be used without permission.

The Himalayan Griffon Vulture or Gyps himalayensis is also called the Himalayan Vulture is an Old World vulture in the family Accipitridae. Related to the European griffon vulture (G. fulvus); a species found along the Himalayas and the adjoining Tibetan Plateau. It is one of the two largest Old World vultures and true raptors.

The wingspan is just so massive, fantastic display as they soar way up high using the high wind, they barely flapped their wings; as if they defied gravity and turbulence, flying with stretched wings without spending so much energy.

Booking a flight to Phuket was not in our plans last January, we wanted to see the Pied Avocets and the Black-faced Spoonbill and the rest of the rarities right there. We balanced the our decisions basing on the Conservation Statuses of the species and then the flight was booked. I spent three days in Phuket driving a motorcycle everyday to save and it was also very wise to use in chasing the raptors at Chalong. I needed an open situation in which I can see everything since I ddn’t have Arpha Vida Buga-ay to help me spot whatever. Driving to the location was not quite a chore for me at first and then I got used to it and I also figured out the roads and streets of Phuket.

Everybody wants to go there for the beach, fun, parties, shows, island fun and comfort; I was there for a carrion eater of a massive bird from Himalayas. I found them on the first day on top of the ridge of a small mountain as they were using the thermals to make them stay up high. The second day was also exciting as I found them flying over a mountain side and lucky there was a road going up, so I drove fast and I was able to see four of them. On third day, I was frustrated as I was expecting them to fly lower and I can’t seem to find them anymore, I followed the road going to the elephant trail as instructed to me by Khun Rat Punarak, which I was also there the day before; I saw them being chased by another raptor. I decided to be proactive and really exert more effort in finding them close. I was reward with some fantastic shots and I am so happy that I don’t have to go to Cambodia for this and the Himalayas. Driving with a motorcycle up to the location every morning at 4:00 am was a bit of a stress to me and going back to the city was more stressful as the traffic was scary to navigate around. I had to check my mobile phone for the GPS every now…

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Barn Owls
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Pied Harrier (male)
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Plumbeous Redstart (female)
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Plumbeous Redstart (male)
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EARLY BIRDS

"and let birds fly above the earth across the vault of the sky"

Himalayan Griffon Vulture
Barn Owls
White-crowned Forktail
Pied Harrier (male)
Plumbeous Redstart (female)
Plumbeous Redstart (male)
White-capped Redstart (male)
Green Peafowl (male)
Slaty-legged Crake
Buffy Fish Owl
Spoon-billed Sandpiper
Wreathed Hornbill
Mountain Hawk-eagle
Brown Boobook
White-rumped Pygmy Falcon
Forest Wagtail
Red-billed Blue Magpie
Crested Kingfisher
Streaked Weaver
Abbott’s Babbler
Vernal Hanging Parrot
Blue-eared Kingfisher
Dusky Broadbill
Blue-banded Kingfisher
Stork-billed Kingfisher
Austen’s Brown Hornbill
Javan Frogmouth
Philippine Duck (female)
Philippine Falconet
Cryptic Flycatcher
Philippine Bulbul
Short-billed Brown-dove
Pacific Reef Heron
White Tern
Great Crested Tern
Wedge-tailed Shearwater
Azure-breasted Pitta
Grey-hooded Sunbird
Bundok Flycatcher (female)
Apo Mayna
Philippine Sailfin Lizard
Mangrove Blue Flycatcher
Philippine Eagle
Whiskered Pitta
Slaty-backed Forktail
Little Spiderhunter
Ruddy-breasted Crake
Slaty-breasted Rail
Baillon’s Crake
Blue-winged Leafbird
Pied Bush Chat
Blue Whistling Thrush
Grey Peacock-pheasant (female)
Grey Wagtail
Black-winged Cuckooshrike
Violet Cuckoo (Juvenile)
Coral-billed Ground Cuckoo
Orange-headed Thrush (female)
Orange-headed Thrush
Mrs Gould’s Sunbird (male)
Orange-bellied Leafbird (female)
Chestnut Thrush
Black Bulbul
Whiskered Yuhina
Silver Pheasant (male)
Red-flanked Bluetail (male)
Rufous-gorgeted Flycatcher
Chestnut-vented Nuthatch
White-headed Bulbul
White Wagtail
Indian Spot-billed Ducks
Grey Nightjar
Ferruginous Flycatcher
Black-Capped Kingfisher
Ferruginous Wood Partridge (male)
Orange-bellied Flowerpecker (female)
Greater Green Leafbird
Yellow-eared Spiderhunter
Eurasian Curlew
Java Sparrow
Purple-throated Sunbird
Common Hoopoe
Black-headed Woodpecker
Grey-capped Pygmy Woodpecker
Blue Pitta (male)
Spot-billed Pelican
Thick-billed Green-pigeon
Green-billed Malkoha
Chestnut-breasted Malkoha
Black-and-Red Broadbill
Red-legged Crake
Brown-cheeked Fulvetta
Orange-breasted Trogon (male)
Blue-Winged Pitta
Black-backed Kingfisher
Greater Flameback (male)
Black-thighed Falconet
Ochraceous Bulbul
Indian Nightjar
Asian Golden Weaver (male)
Firethroat
Black-breasted Thrush
Verditer Flycatcher (female)
Verditer Flycatcher
Red-whiskered Bulbul
Red-faced Liocichla
Little Pied Flycatcher
Dark-backed Sibia
Crested Finchbill (male)
Large Niltava (male)
Large Niltava (female)
Crested Finchbill (female)
Silver-eared Laughingthrush
Flavescent Bulbul
Red-flanked Bluetail (female)
White-gorgeted Flycatcher
Mrs Hume’s Pheasant (male)
Hill Prinia
Spectacled Barwings
Slaty-backed Flycatcher
Pacific Reef Heron
Little Tern
Lesser Sand Plover
Greater Sand Plover (male)
Oriental Plover
Garganey
Indian Cormorant
Black-crowned Night Heron
Glossy Ibis
Zitting Cisticola
Firethroat
Alexandrine Parakeet (male)
Alexandrine Parakeet (female)
Oriental Scops Owl
Spot-breasted Parrotbill
Long-tailed Minivet (male)
Grey-backed Shrike
Davidson’s Leaf Warbler
Red-Headed Trogon (female)
Moustached Barbet
Claudia’s Leaf Warbler
Banded Kingfisher (female)
Asian Fairy-bluebird (female)
Grey Bushchat (female)
Grey Bushchat (male)
Dusky Warbler
Buff-throated Warbler
Great Tit
Rusty-cheeked Scimitar Babbler
Mrs. Hume’s Pheasant (female)
Rufous-fronted Babbler
Blyth’s Shrike-babbler (female)
Mountain Bamboo Partridge
Stripe-breasted Woodpecker
Orange-bellied Leafbird
Pied Kingfisher
Brown-throated Treecreeper
Lesser Adjutant
Hainan Blue Flycatcher
Rufous Limestone-babbler
Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher (male)
Tickell’s Blue Flycatcher (female)
Pin-striped Tit-babbler
Siberian Rubythroat
Oriental Magpie-robin (male)
Oriental Magpie-robin (female)
Spotted Dove
Siberian Blue Robin
Taiga Flycatcher (male)
Siberian Blue Robin (female)
Bluethroat
Black-tailed Godwit
Pacific Golden Plover
Spotted Redshank
Slender-billed Gull
Grey-eyed Bulbul
Greater Painted-snipe (male)
Rosy Pipit
Oriental Darter
Purple Heron
Pied Bush Chat
Amur Falcon (female)
Common Hill Myna
Sarus Crane
Pale-legged Leaf Warbler
Crimson Sunbird
Tickell’s Brown Hornbill
Caspian Tern
Asian Emerald Cuckoo
Great Hornbill
Red-breasted Parakeet
Plaintive Cuckoo (male)
Grey-headed Canary-flycatcher
Siamese Fireback Pheasant (female)
Black-headed Gull
Heuglin’s Gull
White-browed Scimitar Babbler
Spangled Drongo
< >
Birding Stories
By Ali Bernie Buga-ay Published on Nov 20, 2018
0 2 mins
Joys of Birding
(Photograph by: Ephraim Montero) Ali Bernie Buga-ay fifth from the left wearing a hat, Ep-ep Montero second from the left together with Sweet-sweet Vega his sweetheart. Friends in front of the fire was a great feeling.

Sevendays of Creation would like to thank Ep-ep Montero and his friends for being the best people in the world. Our van can’t make it to the farm of Benjamin Torregosa Maputi Jr. as the road was horribly bad. We met Ep-ep Montero on the road as they were also looking for the way to Maputi Bird Preserve, they went ahead. I paid a motorcycle to go to find Ben so he can pick us up from where we stopped; instead, I found Ep-ep Montero’s truck on the road side. I stopped the motorcycle to chat with them, timely, he was actually writing a note for us with his mobile phone number so they can take us from where we were if needed. Yes! we needed them so badly, they drove back down the hill and loaded our stuff even though they were overloaded already. From the bottom of our hearts Ali Bernie Buga-ay and Harry Miller we thank you so much. It was a fantastic night with you guys around the campfire as we sang song of praise to the Creator, sharing joys of adventures and the love for our Maker. Thank you so much.

(Photograph by: Ephraim Montero)…

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