Sightings of Indian (Common) Mynas have recently increased within the Strathbogie Shire, with residents reporting birds not only in towns and along roads, but in farmland, kilometers from the closest towns. Indian Mynas are extremely adaptable, aggressive and intelligent birds that not only compete for nest locations with native species, but actively attack and destroy natives, their nests and their offspring. Most suburbs in Melbourne have seen a massive influx of these little brown and yellow birds, and have experienced devastating declines in native bird populations accordingly.
The SRCMN decided that now was the time to act, before the birds had a strong foothold within the Shire. Luckily for us, we found perhaps the most knowledgeable and enthusiastic expert on Mynas this side of the globe. Senior Park Ranger for the Darebin Parklands, Peter Wiltshire, was kind enough to come and share his knowledge with locals, having had massive success with the removal of thousands of Mynas from the Darebin Parklands. He has conducted countless experiments (some successful, some less so) to find exactly what make Mynas tick. Among topics covered by Peter were Myna behaviour, their impact on native bird populations, methods of trapping, Myna social structure and strategies for drastically reducing Myna populations.
With the day being held at the beautiful Euroa Arboretum, attendees were inspired by Peter and enthusiastic to make a change before it was too late. Among the unexpected facts we gleamed on the day were that nest boxes are an ideal habitat for Mynas, with Mynas actively competing with local bird species and event possums. Another interesting note was that Myna populations seem to be directly correlated with increases in household chicken ownership (due to the availability of food), and litter (due to attraction to shiny plastics).
The SRCMN would like to give our sincerest thanks to Peter for making the trek up to Euroa. His vast knowledge and passion were obvious to everyone who attended, and will hopefully inspire definitive action to rid the Shire of Indian Mynas. The SRCMN would also like to thank all of those curious folks who came along and took and interest in their local area.
If you’re interested in taking action against Indian Mynas within the Strathbogie Shire, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org