As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Monday, 24 September 2012

Bird plague no myna matter

Photo:  Wikipedia
JULIA Gibson never gave Indian mynas much thought until about 2000, when they began a slow invasion of her Arthurs Creek property. ''I came to notice these jolly birds as such a nuisance, mainly pooing everywhere, eating the cat food, horribly noisy. There's a pole near my clothesline and they'd sit up there and poop on my washing,'' she says.

Later she heard how mynas dispossessed native species, taking over their nests in tree hollows and tossing out their eggs and chicks. She realised many of the small birds that had been on the property when she arrived in 1998 had disappeared.

In 2009, she began fighting back. Now mynas venturing on to her 40 hectares are lured into a purpose-built wire trap with bits of dry cat food, imprisoned and humanely and legally euthanased.

She has eradicated 570 of the birds, voted in the ABC Wildwatch Australia Survey in 2005 as the nation's most significant pest and the one most needing control. She has seen native birds, from fairy wrens to rosellas and king parrots, return. She has also inspired almost 300 other like-minded environmentalists.

Mynas were introduced to Melbourne in the 1860s to combat insects in market gardens. Now, it is estimated their numbers have swelled to the millions.

Read more:

more information on the Indian myna (common myna) (Acridotheres tristis):

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