Around 1862 the Indian (Common) Myna was first introduced into Melbourne to control insects in the market gardens and soon after to Sydney. In Queensland they were taken to Cairns around 1865 to try to control the cane beetle. By 2011 Cairns was estimated to have about 1,000 birds per square kilometre.
A few Indian Mynas were taken to Canberra in 1969 (apparently by some well-meaning retiree who thought they have a beautiful call) and since 2006 Canberra Indian Myna Action Group (CIMAG) have trapped over 76,000 (@ July 2021) birds. In 2007 the CIMAG backyard survey showed the Indian Myna was the third most prominent bird in Canberra. Later surveys showed that trapping reduced the Myna to the 20th in 2016 although in 2019 it had recovered to 18th place in Canberra’s landscape.
Mynas have spread across most of Eastern Australia as far west as Deniliquin, West Wyalong, Nyngan and Moree and reported in Broken Hill and Adelaide. Their spread since 2010 has been devastating, especially in areas where there are no trapping programs.
The Indian Myna is listed as one of the top 100 world’s worst invasive species by the World Conservation Union (IUCN). Mynas were voted “the most hated pest in Australia” on ABC’s Wild Watch Quest for Pests in 2005.
Indian Mynas in the Clarence Valley
Indian Mynas have been spotted in nearly every locality and town in the Clarence Valley. Sightings are collected by the CVCIA Myna team and where ever trappers are available, a trap will be provided for that site.
The CVCIA Indian Myna group organises the distribution and management of Myna traps and data throughout the Clarence Valley. We are assisted by the Clarence Valley Council and did receive a Commonwealth Government “Caring for our Country” grant (from March 2012 to June 2013) to expand the program. CVCIA Volunteers Laura and Kevin are coordinating the Indian Myna Control Program and need as much help as you can provide.
Indian Mynas are a serious threat to our native birds and mammals, particularly those which are tree hollow dependent, and also our vulnerable listed Grey-crowned Babblers whose dormitory nests are taken over by the Mynas as these nests can resemble hollows.
We need more people out there trapping these birds and working together to reduce their numbers and assist in maintaining the balance. Please report any large numbers of Indian Mynas ( firstname.lastname@example.org) seen so we can try to recognise any trends in spread and bird numbers to coordinate our trapping efforts. For details of our trapping location please click here.