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Why the endangered regent honeyeater is forgetting its song

Ross and Russel
Article image for Why the endangered regent honeyeater is forgetting its song

A critically endangered species of bird is forgetting its own song.

Regent honeyeater numbers in the wild have fallen so low that some young birds are failing to learn how to sing their own song.

Dr Ross Crates from the Difficult Bird Research Group at ANU says young male birds aren’t meeting other males to learn from.

“These birds are so rare that some young males are actually not able to find another male to learn to sing from, and then they’re picking up the songs from random birds they’re hearing in the landscape,” he told Ross Stevenson.

ROSS STEVENSON: The female bird they want to mate with likes Beethoven but they keep singing rap songs.

DR CRATES: That’s basically it.

Dr Crates also explained what a ‘difficult bird’ is.

“We use it to describe birds that are really hard to study for some reason,” he said.

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Ross and Russel
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