||Image of Chestnut Mannikin (Lonchura malacca) from "Birds of the Philippines" (Gonzales & Rees1988).|
|Image of Nutmeg Mannikin (Lonchura punctulata) from "Birds of the Philippines" (Gonzales & Rees1988).||
Image of White-bellied Mannikin (Lonchura leucogastra) from "Finches & Sparrows" (Clement, 1993).
|Married to a Filipina, I've visited the Philippines many
times and was surprised to be told that the abundant Eurasian Tree Sparrows
(Passer montanus) were "maya: the Philippine National Bird". I thought
it rather curious that an introduced species should be given that elevated
position. However, while bird-watching with my brother-in-law near
some rice paddies, we saw a large flock of what he described as "maya".
These were obviously not Tree Sparrows but one of the Lonchura sp. too
distant to be sure which. In subsequent visits I saw three different
species: L. malacca, L. punctulata and L. leucogastra. Of these three,
the first seems to be the most common and widely distributed. I think
it most closely resembles the front bird on the stamp.
In 1995, the Philippines declared that the National Bird should be the Philippine Eagle (Pithecophaga jefferyi).
Does anyone have a further comments for SG 2645?
|Added 3rd September, 1999||