Sweet success: First recorded wild breeding from captive-bred Regent Honeyeater
A captive-bred Regent Honeyeater (Anthochaera phrygia) has given efforts to save the species in Victoria a boost by successfully raising young in the wild.
Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE) Senior Biodiversity Officer, Glen Johnson said: "The captive bred female bird went 'off the radar' for over a year before it turned up on a nest in September with a wild mate in the Chiltern area of North-eastern Victoria."
"One juvenile was raised by the pair and it represents a vital addition to the gene pool of this threatened species," Mr Johnson said.
"This first recorded successful rearing of young by a captive-bred bird in the wild is exactly what the National Regent Honeyeater Recovery Program has been hoping to achieve."
Birds Australia National Regent Honeyeater Recovery Co-ordinator, Dean Ingwersen said: "This great result highlights the value of the national captive breeding program coordinated by Taronga Zoo as well as the importance of the ongoing monitoring program that aims to increase our understanding of Regent Honeyeater movements and behaviour."
"For 14 months we couldn't find this bird, so to have it deliver such an important boost to this species in Victoria is even more exciting," Mr Ingwersen said.
"We will continue the monitoring program in the hope of finding other captive-bred birds breeding with wild birds."
"There's so much we are still learning about Regent Honeyeater movements and habitat requirements and each detailed sighting report adds to our knowledge."
The Regent Honeyeater (Anthochaera phrygia) is listed as 'Threatened' under the Flora and Fauna Guarantee (FFG) Act.