The Indian (Common) Myna has a yellow bill, legs and a distinctive yellow eye patch. It has a black head and when in flight displays white patches on it's wings. Often confused with the native Australian Noisy Myna (which has similar yellow markings but is almost completely grey) the Indian Myna is 23-28cm long.
The Indian Myna is found all along the East Coast of Australia - it was introduced into Victoria (specifically Melbourne) in the late 1800's in market gardens to combat insects, ignoring the job assigned they established and spread very quickly. The birds will roost in communal nesting sites in house roofs, voids, in larger trees, under bridges and structures that provide cover. These 'gangs' can sometimes reach the 1000's.
The Myna is omnivorous as it feeds on just about anything it can find. From food scraps, to seeds, crustaceans, fruit, pet food, insects and even have been known to feed on other birds such as sparrows and even small mammals. Myna's will scavenge for almost anything that is edible. Their preferred food is grass hoppers however they will feed on any insects they can find.
Life cycle & breeding
The Indian Myna chooses one mate for life. This pest breeding season is all year round and there is fierce competition between the Myna's and Australian native birds. Ferocious competition amongst Myna birds sees pitted battles amongst mating pairs for nesting sites. Usually the losers are native birds especially in trees and hollow logs/trees. Clutches average between 4-6 eggs, the incubation period is between 14-18 days depending on conditions and the fledgling period is 20-25 days.
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