by Allen Alcaide
After learning the life of mammals, we had Mr. Benjamin Vallejo as our guest speaker in our STS class last May 6, 2014. He discussed how bird watching can be used as a measure of the biodiversity of an ecosystem. He also showed us a presentation of different birds that varies in size, color, shape of beaks, food and habitat. I'm sure that everyone in our class will agree that every bird that he showed is really beautiful especially those with different colors. The length and size of their beaks varies according to the food their eat. Some eat worms while some catch fish for food.
After the discussion, we had bird watching as our activity. He gave us 20 minutes to walk around the Science Complex and list the species of birds that we see. As a cross registrant from UP Pampanga, I never thought that a lot of those species of birds he mentioned can be found inside the campus of UP Diliman. There are more than 50 species that are within the campus. It feels so good that our campus is not only a place for intelligent students, a perfect spot for runners, but also a perfect place for those who love bird watching. I'm pretty sure that only few of us are aware of this because most of UP students are too busy with their academic works and rushing to get to their classes. The activity was fun but the part when we list the birds that we saw is quite hard because most of them are really hard to identify. The only bird that can be easily seen anywhere is the Maya. If I'm not mistaken, we are able to found about 12 Mayas, 4, shrikes, 1 yellow bird and many others. Most of the birds are on trees while some live at rooftops. The activity created so much noise and this may be the reason why we're not able to spot other species of birds. Doing this during sunrise can also help others who are interested in bird watching. This is when the birds are more active. I also learned from Mr. Vallejo that taking pictures of birds can be a great source of income. Some professsional photographers even visit the campus for bird photography.
I really enjoyed our activity despite of the hot weather. We also had a chance to bond as a group as we walk around the Science Complex. It also made me realize how beautiful and rich our environment is.