Indian myna
Introduced pest

Indian mynaPhoto: Geoffery Dabb

The Indian myna is native to Southern Asia from Iran to India and Sri Lanka and was introduced into Australia in the 1860s to control insects, which failed. Indian mynas have now become a major problem along the east coast of Australia from Melbourne to far North Queensland.

The Indian Myna is an aggressive, territorial and highly successful scavenger and are now often the most common bird in cities and towns along the east coast of Australia. They take over nesting hollows from native birds, possums and gliders after harassing and evicting them. They also kill the chicks of other birds or destroy eggs and build their nests on top.

Mynas defend several nest sites during the breeding season, although they only use only one to nest in, this excludes native birds and animals from those nesting sites. A breeding pair can raise up to three clutches of young a year, with eight chicks in a clutch. Their numbers can therefore build up rapidly.

Indian myna bird on warning signPhoto: Matt Gilfedder

What you can do to help the problem

  • Clear away food scraps after eating outdoors.
  • Feed pets indoors, or clear away when they have finished.
  • Plant native shrubs to reduce open areas in gardens and avoid planting trees with dense foliage such as pencil pines, in which mynas will roost at night.
  • Block holes in roofs or eaves to prevent mynas nesting in the roof space – make sure you don’t accidentally trap a possum, bat or other animal.

Trapping

Indian myna bird trapPee Gee trap - Peter Green

Trapping and euthanasia of Indian mynas is a good strategy to control the numbers these introduced pests.