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At last, we had our mother persuaded on getting a new puppy in the house. The older four dogs have already passed away, sadly, and we’re missing their bustle and energy. Although we had a new one recently, I named her “Bebang”, but one is not just enough. So one night when we arrived at the house after a long time, my mother announced that we have a new puppy.

I didn’t notice it at first. Maybe because of it s black color. But later I was able to see the puppy. She was already big for a puppy, maybe a few weeks more and she will look more of a fully-grown dog. I am glad that I was still able to document her puppy days. I named her Katya but it was later changed to Katkat.

By the way, our dogs are all mongrel. Mongrel dogs are still popular guard dogs in the Philippine households.

This is a continuation of the previous Camaya post. As I said a while before, spent my time on the beach picking up shells underneath the pebbles, sand grains and waves. I am not too familiar with the seashell terms nor their taxonomy so after gathering, I just grouped them according to their general shape or appearance. They are so pretty to look at! Actually, very few of them still had hermit crabs inside. So the morning after that day, as I laid up the shells under the sun to dry them up and remove the fishy smell, I noticed some dried up hermit crabs upon collecting the shells at noon. Oh well.

Its been my childhood hobby to collect shells. I used to have lots of them before but now they’re all gone because I used them all up in my elementary and high school projects for decorative purposes.

Hooray for beach summer getaway! We went to Camaya beach resort in Mariveles, Bataan just yesterday. Although I am from Bataan, I’ve never been to Mariveles. So it was my first time to experience the steep zigzag roads along the mountains of Mariveles. But we were also welcomed by a beautiful view of rocky mountain formations and terrains. And I could tell that the mountains of Mariveles are teeming with rich flora and fauna. No wonder that researchers conduct regular biodiversity surveys in these areas. During the travel, I saw collared kingfishers, bee eater, some swallows, egret and soaring falcon-liked birds which looked like Brahminy kites.

And here comes the resort experience. Although the beach facilities were generally good, the food was disappointing. The entrance to the resort included an eat-all-you-can lunch buffet, and so since we’re in a beach, I was expecting seafood, dessert, and cold refreshments. However, each guest was only offered rice, pansit and two viands. I was expecting a more lavish menu. And I was not able to pick my own serving (since I eat less than average). The beach wasn’t so great as well. The water was not very crystal clear. There weren’t many intertidal and marine organisms, but of course it was expected since it is a beach resort. But I was still hoping I’d see some sea stars. There were a few jellyfishes though.

I spent all morning and early afternoon under the sun swimming and mostly by collecting sea shells. Collecting sea shells has always been my hobby, however, I’ve been in the beach only a few times. I will make a post soon about the shells I’ve collected.

As I became a biology major student, I have become more immersed in noticing the every detail in my surroundings every time I go outside. Especially when I took vertebrate and ecology subjects, I learned how to identify the birds little by little through sight and hearing. To my surprise, there were also other species of birds in our village besides from the ubiquitous maya! So I took the chance during the Christmas vacation to take photos of these birds.

Blue-tailed Bee-eater (Merops philippinus)

Yellow-vented Bulbul (Pycnonotus goiavier)

Eurasian Tree Sparrow (Passer montanus)

Long-tailed shrike (Lanius shach)

I have been here for a few times since this place is near to the entrance to the jogging lane lined with vegetable plots which I have visited so often for my thesis sampling. The place has its own charm, it felt like being in a rural town. The space is huge enough for gatherings, children’s play space, and dance practices. Beautiful place indeed.

Shoeshine, the infamous resident cat of Pavilion 4, is biology students’ most favorite undissected cat. She garnered her name due to her habit of frolicking people’s shoes or feet. More than that, she is undeniably cute because of her short tail and markings near her eyes. She also is constantly getting pregnant, which is why students always tease her for being malandi.

This was when she was approaching me because of the food I was eating.