Regent Honeyeater Project
BIRD: linking the biodiversity community
The Regent Honeyeater Project is one of the most active volunteer conservation projects in the nation. It has engaged a whole farming community in restoring remnant box-ironbark habitat for the endangered species still living in the district, and attracted ongoing support from a wide cross section of the community to help farmers with the on-ground works.
The project is focussed on preserving and restoring the box-ironbark country around Benalla in north-east Victoria. Key species of interest include the Regent Honeyeater, the Grey-crowned Babbler, and a wide variety of of plants, including a Podolepis daisy which is apparently a new species, the Silver-leaf Tea-tree that is found on only three sites in Victoria, and a range of rare peas like Goodia, Templetonia, Swainsona and Eutaxia.
Propagation and planting days are organised each year for a thousand students from more than 20 local schools and hundreds of volunteers from universities, walking clubs, church groups, bird observers, scouts, environment groups and the like.
A range of other activities such as nest box placement and monitoring provide crucial habitat for rare mammals as well as valuable motivational experiences for visiting groups.
Since its foundation in 1996, the project has protected or restored nearly 1000 hectares of habitat, constructed over 150 kilometres of fencing, made more than 200 nest boxes for the endangered Squirrel Glider, and planted over 300,000 seedlings at over 250 sites.