Have you seen this bird? The Honeyeater

Last weekend 1000 volunteers ventured out across NSW and Victoria in search of the critically endangered Regent Honeyeater. The survey, coordinated by BirdLife Australia’s Woodland Birds for Biodiversity team, is one of two annual targeted survey periods which rely on volunteer efforts to monitor priority locations.

With an estimated wild population of only 350 mature individuals, survey results provide valuable information for the recovery and conservation efforts for the species.

While these scheduled surveys provide a snapshot of populations in May and August, data from other times of the year is also valuable and BirdLife Australia encourages people to look for these critically endangered birds at any time and particularily as the weather warms up in spring and we move into Regent Honeyeater breeding and nesting time.

If you are lucky enough to see one please record the date, a precise location, the number of birds and any colour leg band details. Other information such as what type of tree they were in and details of any other birds species that were around is also useful. A photo for confirmation is also helpful where possible. Sightings can be reported to BirdLife Australia using Freecall number 1800 621 056 or by email woodlandbirds@birdlife.org.au.

Did you know that we have a Regent Honeyeater hotspot right in our region? The Capertee Valley is one of the most important breeding locations in the country and vital for the survival of the species.

Photo credit: Mick Roderick

As part of the national recovery plan for this species, a release of captive-bred Regent Honeyeaters will take place in the Capertee Valley in August. Post release surveys of the release site and surrounding areas will be essential to monitor and evaluate the success of this project.

Pending favourable conditions, 40 Regent Honeyeaters will be released into the Capertee Valley National Park and volunteers will be crucial in measuring short-term survival and breeding success. BirdLife Australia will be releasing a mobile phone-based app to facilitate reporting of Regent Honeyeater sightings during the project and will be seeking volunteers to assist with monitoring.

If you would like to find out more about the project and how you can get involved, BirdLife Australia will be holding an information session on the Proposed Release of Critically Endangered Regent Honeyeaters and BBQ on Sunday 25 August at Glen Alice Hall from 1pm to 3pm.

Volunteers are also required to assist with tree planting in the Capertee Valley from Friday 16 to Sunday 18 August. The planting is part of on-going efforts to enhance and restore habitat for the Regent Honeyeater and other woodland birds.

For more details, or if you are able to assist, please contact Wendy Fox on 9647 1033 or by email: southernnsw@birdlife.org.au.