The Indian (or Common) Myna is a brown bird about 23-25cm tall with black head and neck; and a yellow beak, eye patch, feet and legs. Its white wing patches are obvious when they are flying. On the ground, where Mynas prefer to feed, it walks (some say struts) rather than hops.
The bird most often mistaken for a Indian Myna is the Noisy Miner (Manorina melanocephala) a protected native.
Although the Noisy Miner and the Indian Myna both have yellow skin behind the eye and a yellow beak and legs, you can distinguish the native Noisy Miner by its predominantly grey body and white chest. Noisy Miners are mainly nectar eaters so are not often seen hopping on the ground. Whilst this bird may be noisy around the garden and can be territorial, it does not pose the same threat to other birds and animals as the Indian Myna, and the Noisy Miner is a protected species.
The ANU website also provides descriptions of both of these birds and has Indian Myna calls you can listen to.
Beware – once you get your eye and ear in, you will start seeing and hearing them everywhere! Remember to report any Myna sightings so we can keep track of them.
Kevin has made a short movie of an Indian Myna, turn on your sound to hear it but be aware that this is just a few of their many calls.
If you are not certain the bird you have is an Indian Myna, please phone Laura or Kevin on 6649 4712 or email firstname.lastname@example.org who will be more than happy to assist.