Common myna & noisy miner

Common myna & noisy miner

Ways to reduce numbers

The common myna (also known as the Indian myna) is an introduced bird species that is considered a pest in Australia.

They commonly pick off seedlings in vegetable gardens, sometimes raid fruit trees, and often eat pet food.

They also like to nest in places that can cause damage to property, like in roofs, under eaves, in building gaps and in air-conditioning.

Despite most people's perceptions, there is uncertainty that common mynas are having an impact on local biodiversity.

Research shows that noisy miners are highly territorial and have shown to aggressively exclude smaller birds from their territories.

Other species such as the predatory pied currawong, Australian raven, grey butcherbird and laughing kookaburra are also likely to have contributed to reduced diversity and abundance of small birds.

While our urban environment is an important refuge for indigenous fauna, and some species are doing well we are looking at supporting and focusing our work on those animals that need assistance.

Global threat

Introduced species pose a major threat to biodiversity across the globe. Understanding their impact can be quite complex in an urban environment but is critical to effectively manage them.

For example, managing introduced species may not help our priority species recover if habitat loss and fragmentation is the major cause of species decline, but learning what we can do at home is a start to helping our local biodiversity. To discourage these species from your neighbourhood, try the following:

  • Plant more local, native shrubs and grasses, and reduce your lawn area if you can. Increase the prickly, thick shrubs so that the smaller birds can nest and hide from the aggressive birds.
  • Don't feed birds – they don't need extra food.
  • Feed pets inside if possible but if not, don't leave your pets unwanted food where birds can get it – these birds will eat almost anything and pet food is a favourite.
  • Place netting over your vegetable garden. Make sure it is wildlife friendly netting.
  • Block holes in roofs and eaves to stop birds nesting and, hopefully, break the nesting cycle.
  • Keep palms and other non-native trees trimmed and remove dead fronds.

Noisy Miner

The common myna is brown with a black head and yellow bill. (Photo Richard Taylor, some rights reserved)

Noisy Miner

The noisy miner is mostly grey with black crown and cheeks and yellow bill.

Last updated: Monday, 1 December 2014