The Bird’s Forgotten Song

Regent Honeyeater (Anthochaera Phrygia) – Critically Endangered

Suburban Melbourne and Sydney

From the mouth of a Regent Honeyeater

comes the song of a friarbird and often

the tune of a black-faced cuckooshrike.

The female of the species moves on,

unresponsive to this oddity.

She finds the repertoire uninspired,

the vocal range and stamina brief.

Soon she hears the call she has been

waiting for: bill-clicking, resonant, true.

Hastening to the source of this beauty -

twitching, expectant - she does not find

the black and lemon bird, tail edged

in yellow. The melody is sounding

from a machine tied to a tree,

positioned by a human hand.

Photo source: Birdlife Australia