Tweet, tweet tweet.
These were the only bird sounds I knew before, so whenever I hear a bird chirping, I would always assume that this is the only sound they make.
Apparently, this is not the case at all. If we listen closely, birds actually sing and they can build a choir of their own. I remember myself walking around the University of the Philippines (UP) campus and hear the birds singing around me. I would then look up hoping to find where it is but they just won’t like to be seen.
Joining Haribon’s Bird Walk activity last July 6 at the UP Diliman showed me that spotting birds is not as easy as looking up. It requires 20 percent luck, 80 percent patience and another 100 percent for equipment and Haribon staff. Without these elements, I would have only seen Eurasian tree sparrows (commonly known as Maya) personally and other species in the library. It was an amazing experience especially when I saw the white-collared kingfisher with its bright blue cape partnered with its elegant sash running down its belly. I thought they can only be seen in provinces, but no! It was just around the corner perching on a post. Amazing! Not just that, I saw other bird species like the spotted dove, pied fantails and the Philippine pygmy woodpecker. It was heartwarming to see these species around the university, which I never knew were there.
In totality, this experience is truly a memorable one. It made me appreciate more the environment that we have which is important in dealing with different environmental issues to date. I believe that actions will be more effective if people first acknowledge their role as stewards of nature. Let us start by planting native trees and plants to serve as their home.
I wonder what Earth will be if every one of us become stewards of the environment. What would life be if every time you look out the window, you’ll see flourishing biodiversity?
These ideas, hopefully, will not remain as pure imaginations or aspirations. We still have hope as species are still lurking around. We still have time. It is a matter of how much time we still have to save the Earth.
What we need to realize now is that we need to work together or else, the environment we now see will continue to deteriorate and future generations may not have the chance to glimpse what it has to offer. Let us not deprive them of that.
(Czarina Constantino has been a Haribon member since February 2013.)