A few reports of zero Regent Honeyeaters (they are an endangered species after
all) but at least people are out looking.
Last week I looked around the area south of Dubbo, including the northern
section of Goobang National Park, for no target species and then Capertee
Valley and came up with Regents at three locations, totalling 1, 3 and ~15
birds. Timothy Hyde has blown this latter group out to 25 now. He had the
luxury of spending quite a bit more time there than I did. I got into a couple
of areas that most birders wouldn't get to but found that, in general, things
were pretty quiet honeyeater-wise. The exception was the very first spot I
looked at which had large numbers of small honeyeaters but no Regents. At
least three Swift Parrots were heard at this location though. Timothy also
recorded a lone Swift Parrot at his location on the other side of the valley.
On Saturday night I received a very excited call from Lynne Heywood (a regular
Regent volunteer). She had been out doing surveys and actually FOUND Regent
Honeyeaters in Tuckland State Forest south-west of Dunedoo!! Lynne is
developing a good strike rate as she found Regents near Gulgong on a search
weekend in 1999. It just goes to show that you have to be out there looking to
find these elusive birds. It also helps our efforts to better understand the
movement patterns of this species when we manage to find them away from the
spots people tend to look for them.
I went out with Lynne on Sunday morning and had a look at her Regents. Only
four birds in total (1, 1 and 2 birds). There were in a patch of White Box and
Mugga, both of which were flowering. The White Box had LOTS of friarbirds and
Red Wattlebirds while the Mugga was silent.
While the official search days were last weekend, I am happy to accept
completed survey sheets, regardless of whether you saw anything or not, a week
either side. If you couldn't get out last weekend there's always next weekend.
I am out again this week checking out areas from Dubbo to Gulgong tomorrow and
then Gulgong - Mudgee - Wollar - Rylstone later in the week. As the saying
goes "You'll never, ever know if you never, ever go",
Regent Honeyeater Recovery Coordinator
P.O. Box 2111
Dubbo NSW 2830
Ph. Freecall 1800 621 056 or 02 6883 5335
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