Fighting roosters. Siquijor, Philippines, February 2008.

Fighting cocks in the Philippines: the video

  Philippines: Visayas - February 2008

Dear English-speaking readers, this page is an automatic translation made from a post originally written in French. My apologies for any strange sentences and funny mistakes that may have been generated during the process. If you are reading French, click on the French flag below to access the original and correct text: 

Crazy atmosphere, in a cockfighting arena, in the Philippines! This video was shot in 2008 on the small island of Siquijor, in the Visayas. Sensitive souls should not watch it.

Cockfighting: the video

In February 2008, I told you from the Philippines about my visit to the cockfighting arena of the village of Enrique Villanueva, on the island of Siquijor. After the story and the pictures, here is the video !

You will be able to get an idea of the overexcited atmosphere (almost exclusively male) that reigns around this arena of angry gallinaceans. This is obviously not a place for the faint of heart or animal lovers. In the Philippines, these cockfights are very popular and are the object of passionate bets. Some people bet very big and leave more than feathers.

Updated, January 2018 : Forgive the poor quality of these images, shot in 2008 with a modest compact camera, with a video mode at only 480 or 640 pixels, I don't know, at a time when 4K didn't exist yet and when the iPhone 3G was about to become the new fashionable technological jewel...

The fight itself is very short. Each rooster has, fixed to his leg, a long curved and pointed blade, like a small sword. One guesses it is razor sharp and carefully sharpened for the occasion.

The two roosters are presented one to the other, held at arm's length or by the feathers of the tail by their respective owner. It is a question of exciting the animals a little by approaching them beak against beak. They are released for good in the arena when the bets are balanced on both sides.

Afterwards, it goes very fast. A whirlwind of feathers, everyone screams and shakes behind the wooden bars. In a few minutes, it's over... A guy cleans the arena for the next fight, and it starts again.

To read also → Well sharpened feathers by my fellow Quebec journalist Marie-Julie Gagnon, who bounces on my article in her blog Taxi Brousse, to take stock of the situation of cockfighting in the world ...

  Philippines: Visayas - February 2008

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  1. What a crazy atmosphere! I think I passed through this little village, but I didn't have the chance (and especially the time!) to see these gallinaceous in action in the arena 😉

    Nice editing though. I love the music, it fits the video so well!

  2. • In Thib> If I believe the account of your blog, you must have passed by Enrique Villanueva, it is on the road to the East from Sandugan, a little before Salaagdong.

    Cockfights are held every Sunday, Neal, our dive guide who kindly converted that day for me and my friends to a tour guide, explained 🙂

    I had a lot of fun editing the sequences. I have tried to restore the best this atmosphere boosted with all these guys who make up the bets in every fight. Really amazing.

    The funniest part, on the way home, was this kid on a motorcycle following our van, holding one of the occured roosters at arm's length... Perfect sequence for the "punchline" of my little video montage! 😆

    Finally, for the music, I used one of the small free sequences provided by my editing software. After several tries, I realized that this was the one that "fit" the best. Your impressions confirm me in my choice!


  3. Hello Corinne
    I discover your blog.
    I find your video interesting.
    On the other hand, the music is not so suitable, in my opinion...
    But I understand your little choice.
    Thank you in any case for this discovery.
    On the substance how shall I say... It's a bit beastly but I understand that it's a tradition.
    I won't pass judgment, but I don't think I'll be hosting any at home 😉
    That's it, thank you, I continue to discover your journeys ...

  4. Hello Yves, and welcome! 🙂

    The music I chose is only there as an introduction and a conclusion, to bring a little offbeat touch and "de-dramatize" the cockfight. I can understand if you don't find it suitable.

    But my idea was to show, precisely, that what can seem "beastly" seen from here, is only a very banal and very appreciated distraction there. For the guys who came with us, it was never just a nice idea for a "Sunday outing".

    Betting is not officially allowed everywhere, but cockfighting is also very popular in countries like Indonesia or Thailand, for example. Until now, I had not had the opportunity to witness this kind of "entertainment". Having said that, I can understand why one might find it unappetizing. The worst thing about it is not so much the blood of the fighting birds as the huge sums of money that the bettors lose. And many of them are ruining themselves.

    I mean, rest assured, I won't be hosting one at my house either... 😆

    Have a nice trip on "Petites Bulles d'Ailleurs".


  5. This reminds me of the famous debate for or against bullfighting?
    I love opening up the topic of conversation among friends. Passions run high.
    And yet... 😉

  6. One thing is sure: I won't open the debate here. The "for or against" are often the occasion of peremptory judgments and too reductive for my taste, especially on the blogs...

  7. To Marie-Julie:

    I just read your article on "Taxi-Brousse". Very good extension of info. I'm going to add the link to mine right now 😉

    Anyway, thanks for the Moby link. I'll have a listen. It might be an interesting way to get out of the hard drive a whole bunch of underwater videos that I've done with sound but that I don't prefer to broadcast as they are, for rights reasons...

    See you soon via blogs and have a good day!