Billions of dollars have been spent on restoring temperate eucalypt woodlands in the sheep–wheat belt of south-eastern Australia (Hajkowicz 2009). The research and monitoring into the response of biodiversity to such restoration efforts commenced in the late 1990s and continues today (Lindenmayer et al. 2016d). Our work is based in the Fenner School of Environment and Society at The Australian National University and has entailed monitoring temporal patterns of response to revegetation in birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians and plants (Fig. 1) across large areas of inland Victoria and New South Wales, extending into south-east Queensland (Fig. 2). This study provides a brief overview of ten of the most important lessons for restoration efforts learned from the past two decades of work. The majority of lessons are drawn from our research on birds,although some similar outcomes have been found from work on other taxa such as arboreal marsupials and reptiles (Lindenmayer et al. 2016d).