Once heard all along the eastern coast of Australia, from Brisbane to Adelaide, the soft metallic chiming call of the Regent Honeyeater (Anthochaera phrygia) is now a rare sound.
Living in dry box-ironbark eucalypt woodlands and forests, Regent Honeyeaters prefer the most fertile areas along river valleys and flats. They feed on the nectar of flowering eucalypts, as well as some invertebrates and lerps. Regent Honeyeaters are highly mobile and capable of travelling long distances to follow the flowering patterns of the eucalypts on which they feed.
Populations of Regent Honeyeaters began declining in 1940s due to the loss, fragmentation and degradation of their habitat. They are no longer found in south-western Victoria, and are probably extinct in South Australia.
Key reasons for this decline are:
Zoos Victoria is working to change the fate of threatened species and is committed to Fighting Extinction – we will ensure that no more Victorian terrestrial vertebrate species become extinct. Melbourne Zoo is breeding Regent Honeyeaters to help with the recovery of this species.
Join in tree planting days with community groups, e.g. the Regent Honeyeater Project