Meet the Philippines’ ultimate forest floor jewel: Whiskered Pitta.
This calling Whiskered Pitta measures 9 inches and is a highly localized and uncommon Luzon endemic. It is the largest pitta in the Philippines (second largest is this equally stunning Steere’s (Azure-breasted) Pitta),) and can be found in the mid to high elevation forests of the Sierra Madres, Cordilleras in Luzon. It is almost twice the size of the smaller but similarly-looking Red-bellied Pitta, click for the video here), and prefers to stay in the ground, turning up leaf and forest floor litter in search of worms, insects and other small invertebrates.
This was taken last March in wet and rainy Camp Sawa, Northern Luzon with a group of Singaporean birders. Check out Nicky’s hand-held video at around 1:20 with a small compact point and shoot Canon s95. 🙂
Whiskered Pitta, Pitta kochi
Camp Sawa, Penablanca Protected Landscape, Cagayan, Philippines