The Forgotten Song

Saving the Regent Honeyeater

Coral Vass
Illustrated by Jess Racklyeft
April 2023
More details
  • Publisher
    CSIRO Publishing
  • Published
    11th April 2023
  • ISBN 9781486316403
  • Language English
  • Pages 32 pp.
  • Size 9.84" x 9.84"
  • Images color illus & paintings throughout

A moving story of a Regent Honeyeater who forgets his song, and how he learns it again.

The song of the regent honeyeater has been heard in the bush for many generations – but could it soon be lost forever?

Regent’s father had learned the song from his father, who learned it from his father too. But with Regent’s species now facing extinction, there is no one around to teach him. Regent tries to mimic the sounds of different birds but without success.

Will Regent learn his mating call before it’s too late? Or will his ancient song be forgotten forever?

Reading level varies from child to child, but we recommend this book for ages 5 to 9.


  • Introduces readers to the concept of how and why a species can become endangered.
  • Explores how songbirds need to listen and learn from others in their species in order to keep their song.
  • Shows how conservation work is providing hope for Regent Honeyeaters, and helping them learn their song.

"The Regent Honeyeater, a stunning bird of Australia's woodlands, is in real trouble. A large recovery effort is underway to save the species, with a suite of recovery actions being implemented across their range. This book beautifully captures the essence of the bird and its environment, the current situation it finds itself in, and the work of the amazing team working to save them from extinction."

Dean Ingwersen, Woodland Bird Program Leader and Regent Honeyeater recovery coordinator, BirdLife Australia

Coral Vass

Coral Vass is an award-winning children's author. She has always loved telling stories and is passionate about giving all children an equal opportunity to read.

Jess Racklyeft

Jess Racklyeft is an author and illustrator based in Melbourne. She particularly loves illustrating plants and animals and sharing her love of the Australian bush.

picture book; regent honeyeater; endangered species; birds