Why are Myna Birds a problem?
The Common or Indian Myna, identified by its yellow beak and eye patch, and brown body, is an introduced pest bird and their population is spreading rapidly. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature has ranked the Myna amongst the world’s 100 most invasive pest species.
They are territorial and highly aggressive birds who compete with and displace native wildlife for habitat areas. They take over tree hollows and plug up nest sites they are not using, forcing possums and birds out and ejecting nestlings and eggs from their nests. They also compete with native fauna for food and habitat.
It is important to distinguish the pest Indian Myna from the common Noisy Miner. Indian Mynas are predominantly brown with a black head. In flight, white wing patches are clearly visible. Noisy Miners are native birds that are predominantly grey. They are protected and must be released if trapped.
What is Council doing?
Lane Cove Council is conducting a program to try to reduce the number of Indian Myna birds in the Lane Cove village. In addition to ongoing efforts to work with local businesses and attend to regular cleaning of potential food sources, Council's current program also consists of approved pest control methods undertaken by qualified professionals. The current baiting method is extremely targeted to reduce exposure to native species. Other options available include trapping the birds in a specifically designed Myna bird trap, different baiting techniques and using bird spikes.
To help complement these initiatives please assist us by not feeding any birds in the Plaza and The Canopy and ensure all rubbish is disposed of quickly into appropriate bins.
What can you do to help?
Don’t leave food scraps or pet foods outside and ensure that rubbish bins and other potential food sources are covered. Don’t feed birds in your backyard! Block potential nest sites, such as holes in roofs or gutters and remove any Myna nests you find in nest boxes or tree hollows on your property. You should also ensure that you have self closing doors and flyscreens to prevent Myna birds from entering your house. Get involved with the Backyard Habitat program for information on planting local indigenous plants to encourage native species to your garden. Or get involved with your own trapping and disposal program, or start a community trapping program.
Community trapping programs
Successful community trapping programs have been running in many areas including Canberra and on the Central Coast NSW. In addition to trapping, targeted professional pest control techniques that includes roof top baiting or hand feeding of bait can have a significant impact. Residents can set up a similar program in their own backyards and build their own trap or buy them online .
If you are interested in conducting your own trapping program it is important that you follow the trapping instructions, and commit to the protocol on animal welfare with regard to trapping and disposal of Indian Myna birds.
For any further information - contact Council's Environmental Health Officer on 9911 3555 or email firstname.lastname@example.org