Hunt for the Regent Honeyeater

September 7, 2018

On Sunday September 9, members of the citizen science group Gwydir Ark will be heading out in search of the rare Regent Honeyeater.

Offering an invitation to others wanting to seek out the Regent Honeyeater or with an interest in natural history and conservation, members of the group will meet in Barraba at the Rugby League Ground opposite Lillis Lane. This is on the Bingara Road, just north of the bridge over the Manilla River. We will leave the sports ground at 8:30am along a route that will take us along the Old Bundarra Road from the Woodsreef turnoff, eventually returning to the Bingara Road via Gulf Creek Road.

Regent Honeyeaters are often found in and around Mugga Ironbarks and Casuarinas, a habitat that is found along Nangahrah Creek. The group anticipates several stops in likely locations and will walk sections of the road and along the creek (moderate or Grade 3 walking level) although the total distance that may be walked will depend on what is seen on the day.

Binoculars will be a great asset as this area also hosts the Swift Parrot at this time of year and is rich in bird-life. Photographers are encouraged to bring along their larger lenses. There will be time for morning tea and lunch and people are advised to bring water and snacks that can be easily carried for the walking stages.

honey-eater_swift parrot

Both the Regent Honeyeater and Swift Parrot are listed as critically endangered, with habitat loss being a significant factor in their population declines. “Both species rely heavily on winter flowering plants and flowering trees during breeding periods. These birds are indicator species as it is known that areas where their populations are strong also feature a significantly diverse range of other fauna and flora. These are the sorts of areas that are great to visit and really beneficial to conserve,” a Gwydir Ark member told us.

Gwydir Ark would like to extend the invitation not only to residents of our region with an interest in Natural History, but to travellers who would like an opportunity to do some exploring with good company, and hopefully also be able to enjoy some of our rarer wildlife.

More details are available through the Northern Slopes Landcare Association, Bingara on 6724 2052.