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Common Myna - BirdForum Opus

(Redirected from Common Mynah)

Alternative names: Indian Mynah; House Myna; Locust Starling

Nominate subspecies
Photo © by Gopal Bhaskaran
Coorg, India, 5 July 2005
Acridotheres tristis

Identification

Photo © by AJDH
Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia, 2 August 2006

23–27 cm (9-10 in). A fairly large, stocky Myna.

  • Brownish plumage
  • Black hood
  • Bare yellow eye-patch
  • Very short frontal crest
  • Dark brown wing with large white wing patches, obvious in flight
  • White vent and centre of belly
  • Yellow legs and bill

Sexes similar. Juveniles are duller and browner.

Distribution

Found from Central Asia (Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan) south to Iran, Afghanistan, almost the entire Indian Subcontinent and east to Burma, South China (Yunnan and Hainan), Thailand, Indochina, the Malay Peninsula and Singapore.
Has been introduced widely elsewhere, including Florida, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Brunei, Sumatra, Taiwan, Japan, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Iraq, Jordan, Israel, Russia (around Moscow and in Trans-Baikal region), St Helena and Ascension Island, Tenerife, Hawaii, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, New Caledonia, Fiji, Samoa (and many other small Pacific islands), Madagascar, Comoros, Seychelles, Maldives and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
Common to abundant in its range.

Taxonomy

Nesting in neighborhood garden, the pair came frequently for a drink
Photo © by Alok Tewari
Delhi, India, 11 June 2015

Subspecies

Two subspecies recognized[1]:

  • A. t. melanosternus in Sri Lanka
  • A. t. tristis in the rest of the range

Habitat

Typically in open woodland, cultivation and around habitation, also in towns and cities. Avoids forest. Occurs up to 3000m in the Himalayas, up to 1525m in southeast Asia.

Behaviour

Forms communal roosts in trees, sometimes with thousands of birds. May roost with other species like Javan Myna, Asian Glossy Starling, Purple-backed Starling, Common Starling, Rosy Starling or Crows, Parakeets and Sparrows.

Diet

Omnivorous. Feeds on insects, frogs, fish, geckos, other small lizards, eggs and nestlings, mice, carrion, worms, snails, spiders, seeds, fruit and nectar. The generic name Acridotheres means "grasshopper hunter".
Forages singly or in pairs, mostly on the ground.

Breeding

Juvenile
Photo © by the late Rookery
Havelock North, New Zealand, 29 December 2009

Breeding season differs through range, breeds all year in India. Monogamous, belived to form pairs for life. Nests solitary. The nest is placed in tree holes, particularly palms but also in other nooks and crannies (including buildings). The normal clutch is 4 - 6 eggs.

Movement

A resident species.

Vocalisation

The song includes croaks, squawks, chirps, clicks and whistles and it often fluffs its feathers and bobs its head in singing. The Common Myna screeches warnings to its mate or other birds in cases of predators in proximity.
<flashmp3>common_myna_Alok.mp3</flashmp3>
Listen in an external program
Dwarahat, Dist. Almora, Uttarakhand Himalayas, Alt. 5200 ft above MSL, India, April-2015.
Calls given by a pair carrying pine-needles to a hole in the wall, to be used as a nesting site.
<flashmp3>common_myna_Alok_2.mp3</flashmp3>
Listen in an external program
Dwarahat, Dist. Almora, Uttarakhand Himalayas, Alt. 5200 ft above MSL, India, April-2017.
Communicating calls between two individuals after Sunset.
Both Recordings by Alok Tewari

References

  1. Clements, J. F., T. S. Schulenberg, M. J. Iliff, S. M. Billerman, T. A. Fredericks, B. L. Sullivan, and C. L. Wood. 2019. The eBird/Clements Checklist of Birds of the World: v2019. Downloaded from http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/download/
  2. Del Hoyo, J, A Elliott, and D Christie, eds. 2009. Handbook of the Birds of the World. Volume 14: Bush-shrikes to Old World Sparrows. Barcelona: Lynx Edicions. ISBN 978-8496553507
  3. Baker, A. J. and A. Moeed. (1987). Rapid genetic differentiation and founder effect in colonizing populations of Common Mynas (Acridotheres tristis). Evolution 41:525-538.
  4. Craig, A., Feare, C. & Garcia, E.F.J. (2020). Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from https://www.hbw.com/node/60874 on 25 January 2020).
  5. Kannan, R. and D. A. James (2001). Common Myna (Acridotheres tristis), version 2.0. In The Birds of North America (A. F. Poole and F. B. Gill, Editors). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/bna.583
  6. Pratt, H.D., Bruner, P., and Berrett, D.G. (1987) A Field Guide to the Birds of Hawaii and the Tropical Pacific. Princeton University Press.
  7. Pyle, R.L., and P. Pyle. 2017. The Birds of the Hawaiian Islands: Occurrence, History, Distribution, and Status. B.P. Bishop Museum, Honolulu, HI, U.S.A. Version 2 (1 January 2017) http://hbs.bishopmuseum.org/birds/rlp-monograph/
  8. Rasmussen, P.C. & Anderton, J.C. 2012. Birds of South Asia. The Ripley Guide. Vols. 1 and 2. Second Edition. Smithsonian Institution. Michigan State University & Lynx Edicions, Washington. D.C., Michigan & Barcelona.

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