Throwback – Timeless Osman, the Philippines 2006

Osman is one of the remote barrios (barangays) of my hometown of Malinao, Aklan in Central Panay in the Philippines. Back in 2006, it was difficult to reach this barrio – it was accessible only by motorcycles travelling through narrow and treacherous mountain roads. Apparently, there is now a road that can be traversed by a motor vehicle that goes to the barrio.

The view going there is breathtaking – old growth forests intermixed with coconut plantations, tall mountain peaks and … rice terraces! The flora is rich with unidentified ferns and ground orchids and various other plants. There is a river that runs through the valley below that has some swimming holes and low water falls. The village itself is situated in a valley along the river that is quite picturesque because of the huge boulders scattered all over. From what I know, this barrio was/is always a progressive one, winning the cleanest and greenest barangay in our town several times.

As for fauna, I saw a few interesting (but common) birds such as the blue-throated bee eater and wood swallow and a captive Brahminy Kite (banog). Up in the forested mountains to the west, the Visayan hornbill makes its home but according to the people I talked to, they are there, but are quite rare. Colasisi (Philippine hanging parrots) may also be found sometimes in the forest.

Master of its Domain
Wood swallow on a wire, on the way to Osman

Bee Eaters
Blue-throated bee eaters at the junction between San Dimas and Osman

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