Skip to content

Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary: Philippines

Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary wetlands in the Philippines
Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary wetlands in the Philippines

Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary is located on Olango Island in The Philippines. How amazing this sanctuary is! What a fun place to visit! Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary has been of International importance since 1994.  It was included on the Ramsar List of Wetlands of international Importance on July 1, 1994.     It is the first wetland to make International importance in the Philippines. This makes it a major destination for Birders.  It truly is a haven for migratory birds. These birds are making their amazing journeys back from their nesting grounds. Migration begins from their breeding home in the far North. Many come from places like Siberia, Northern China, and Japan. When they begin to anticipate the lack of food and the onset of severe weather, they begin their yearly journey. It has become a major re-fueling stop for many on their way to Australia and New Zealand. The flight home is a long flight and they use Olango Island as a welcome stop, to renew strength for the miles yet remaining. It is Bird Heaven! It is a paradise for Migratory Birds.

Olango Island is also the winter home to species who live in colder regions of the world.  Their greatest need is a place to call home during this time of severe weather and scarcity of food. Not all the birds continue their migration, as some prefer to winter in the beautiful and tropical Olango Island. It is their home, away from home.

There are two times during the year that you can see these beautiful migratory birds on Olango Island. The first being from July till November when they make the Southward Migration. Again, in late February until May, they can be seen as they make the Northward Migration. It is then, that these beautiful birds return home to their breeding grounds. This, is an awesome time to book a birding tour.

So which birds are you most likely to see?  You can never tell what you will see, but among the most regular of guests are the Chinese Egrets, Asiatic Dowitcherrs, and Eurasian Curlews. Not to be forgotten are the Plovers, The Sandpipers, Black-tailed Godwit, and the beautiful Red Knot. These are large and beautiful birds. What a delight to watch them in their home, away from home!

The Chinese Egret breeds on small islands off the coasts of far Eastern Russia, North Korea, South Korea and Mainland China.  It is a tall species with long legs and beautiful white feathers.  During the long severe winters of the North, The Chinese Egret winters in The Philippines and other Asian areas. It is believed that over 50% of these beautiful Migratory Birds winter on Olango Island. How amazing it is to watch them! They are also extremely friendly and usually not afraid of humans. What is there not to love about the Chinese Egret?

Among the  regulars is the beautiful Sandpipers. Snipes, Eurasian Curlews and the Asiatic Dowitcherrs . These migratory birds are becoming threatened and make their winter home on Olango Island. These beautiful regulars on the island are certain to delight you. Most of this group are in the brown color range and have stripes with a little white. Feel free to check out this website for beautiful photo’s of many of the Migratory Birds that winter throughout Asia, especially in the Philippines. The photography is amazing!    

There are several companies that offer Birding Tours. Here are three major Tour Companies that I know of, who are well-known. For your convenience they are listed below.  This is not a recommendation of services. They are simply listed in most major Birding Journals.  If you love birds, then I recommend that this be the year that you visit the Philippines. Birding is fun! Birding is exciting.  The Philippines  is a birders paradise. What are you waiting for? Book your tour today!  See you on Olango Island.