Ibong Adarna

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I have often wondered what the mythical bird “Ibong Adarna” was in the erstwhile kingdom of Berbania where it was described to be a magical bird that could turn humans into stone, that could change its colours as it sings, and that it could cure an ailing king. I haven’t seen this bird yet and haven’t found existing birds to fit this Philippine epic’s mythical description, but I’m content to call the Apo Myna the long lost Ibong Adarna of the old.

About 8 hours from the slopes of Mt. Apo Natural Park one can reach Mt. Kitanglad Range National Park, and at about 1,400 meters above sea level, one can easily see the Ibong Adarnas with their head crest rising proudly as they noisily sing when they come in flocks. One will just stare in awe when their black feathers exude hues of metallic blues and violets, sometimes with shades of greens, whenever the sun’s rays reflect on them, emphasizing the golden yellow patches that surround their round black eyes.

Yet as mysterious as the myth’s author who remains uncertain until this very moment, our magical bird can forever be every beautiful avian treasure the Philippines has or a combination of all these winged jewels. For me though, the Apo Myna is my Ibong Adarna.

APO MYNA, Philippine Endemic restricted to the island of Mindanao, particularly in Mt. Apo and Mt. Kitanglad, Near Threatened as it has a highly restricted and fragmented range, being known from only a small number of sites, at Mt. Kitanglad Range National Park, Ipasug-ong, Bukidnon, March 2014 … Canon EOS 1D4 + EF 600mm f/4L USM + 2x Teleconverter + Benro Tripod and GH-2 Gimbal Head… 1/125, f/8, iso3200, Aperture Priority +7/3, Spot Metering, www.facebook.com/alainpascuaphotography.

Alain Pascua

Alain Pascua

Alain Pascua began in 2009 his crusade as a wild bird photographer using photos of wild birds in their natural habitats as tools for education and conservation. He is one of the founding-administrators of the "Wild Birds of the Philippine" Facebook Page (https://www.facebook.com/philippinebirds) where he and fellow bird photographers share their photos and galleries of Philippine wild birds to the internet world. He co-founded the Philippine Bird Photography Workshops and Tours (https://www.facebook.com/wildbirdphotog.ph) in 2011, and the Wild Bird Photographers of the Philippines (WBPP - https://www.facebook.com/groups/wbpp.admin/) in 2012. Alain Pascua’s photos of wild birds have graced the 2010 year-end advocacy ads and 2011 calendar materials of TeaM Energy, the 2011 calendar of Philippine Eagle Foundation and its 2011 advocacy posters and ads at Mindanews' Our Mindanao Magazine, the 2012 Peatlands in Southeast Asia advocacy poster of Global Environment Centre, and the newly published book Owls of the World A Photographic Guide by Heimo Mikkola. Alain Pascua won second place in the 1st Bird as Art International Bird Photography Competition organized by Art Morris in the Captive Birds Category. His galleries may be viewed online at the following sites: http://www.alainpascua.smugmug.com http://www.facebook.com/alainpascuaphotography http://www.facebook.com/philippinebirds

Alain Pascua

Alain Pascua

Alain Pascua is one of the founding-administrators of the "Wild Birds of the Philippine" Page, the only multi-photographer gallery of Philippine birds in Facebook. He also co-founded the Philippine BIrd Photography Workshops and Tours, a professional outfit, in 2011, and the Wild Bird Photographers of the Philippines (WBPP) in 2012. Alain Pascua’s photos of wild birds have graced numerous publications, the latest are featured in the newly published book Owls of the World A Photographic Guide by Heimo Mikkola. He won second place in the 1st Bird as Art International Bird Photography Competition organized by Art Morris in the Captive Birds Category.

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