FW: [canberrabirds] The Common Myna: 'Is It Benign or Is It a Pariah?'

To: <>
Subject: FW: [canberrabirds] The Common Myna: 'Is It Benign or Is It a Pariah?'
From: "Geoffrey Dabb" <>
Date: Fri, 10 Aug 2012 14:43:13 +1000

I have read this article 3 times and I am unable to see how it shows the Common Myna is responsible for a decline in small birds.  Small birds may have declined over the period but where in the opaque maths is it shown that the myna must be the reason?  Below is a random cut/paste of articles on overall bush-bird decline, including one suggesting the NOISY MINER (expanding in Canberra) is a reason.  [In fact, as I read the piece, it suggests that small birds are INCREASING LESS RAPIDLY in Canberra gardens because of the myna] 



THREATENED AND DECLINING WOODLAND BIRDS IN THE NEW... Description: chrome-extension://mkfokfffehpeedafpekjeddnmnjhmcmk/images/SafeBrowse/sb_unknownannotation.png

File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - Quick View
by JRW Reid - 1999 - Cited by 110 - Related articles
Declining bird species in the SWB. All but two of the 20 Declining species are passerines or 'typical bushbirds. This contrasts with the 38 Threatened ...

1.   Native bird populations declining rapidly - The 7.30 Report - ABC Description: chrome-extension://mkfokfffehpeedafpekjeddnmnjhmcmk/images/SafeBrowse/sb_safeannotation.png

21 Oct 2009 – It is well documented bird populations are in serious decline across the ...LISA WHITEHEAD, REPORTER: The Australian bush without the call ...

2.    [PDF] 

The effect of Noisy Miners on small bush birds: an unofficial cull and ... Description: chrome-extension://mkfokfffehpeedafpekjeddnmnjhmcmk/images/SafeBrowse/sb_nortoncertified.png

File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - Quick View
by SJS DEBUS - Cited by 3 - Related articles
... in each time period. Totals for small (<120 g) 
bush birds, mostly ... are a major contributor to the local decline of many woodland birds. The results also affirm ...

3.   Bush Birds Description: chrome-extension://mkfokfffehpeedafpekjeddnmnjhmcmk/images/SafeBrowse/sb_safeannotation.png

Although none of the bush bird species at Sydney Olympic Park are listed under threatened species legislation, many bush birds are in severe decline across ...

4.    [PDF] 

facing Description: chrome-extension://mkfokfffehpeedafpekjeddnmnjhmcmk/images/SafeBrowse/sb_safeannotation.png

File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat
bush birds are in trouble. Only one ... regions are in decline, and more species will vanish if ... causes and extent of bird declines across the southern ...

5.   No birds in the bush Description: chrome-extension://mkfokfffehpeedafpekjeddnmnjhmcmk/images/SafeBrowse/sb_safeannotation.png › BirdLife News › News Archive Search

01-06-2010. Australia's woodland birds, including many species generally regarded as common and widespread, are declining at an alarming rate according to ...

6.    [PDF] 





From: Paul Fennell [
Sent: Friday, 10 August 2012 2:22 PM
To: 'David McDonald (personal)'; 'CanberraBirds'
Subject: RE: [canberrabirds] The Common Myna: 'Is It Benign or Is It a Pariah?'


Thanks David,

I am most interested in further information on the Striated Paradoxes mentioned in the abstract.  A problematic species I am sure.


(Striated Paradoxes, Rufous Whistler, Willie Wagtail, Grey Fantail, Magpie-lark, House Sparrow, Silvereye, Common Blackbird).






Paul Fennell

Editor Annual Bird Report

COG Databases Manager


026254 1804



From: David McDonald (personal) m("]","david");">[
Sent: Friday, 10 August 2012 9:39 AM
To: CanberraBirds
Subject: [canberrabirds] The Common Myna: 'Is It Benign or Is It a Pariah?'


Readers of the Canberra Times will have seen the article about Kate Grarock's research on Common Mynas in Canberra.

The paper to which it refers is Grarock, K, Tidemann, CR, Wood, J & Lindenmayer, DB 2012, 'Is It Benign or Is It a Pariah? Empirical Evidence for the Impact of the Common Myna Acridotheres tristis on Australian Birds', PLoS One, vol. 7, no. 7, p. e40622.

It is available in free full text at .

The abstract reads:
There is widespread concern over the impact of introduced species on biodiversity, but the magnitude of these impacts can be variable. Understanding the impact of an introduced species is essential for effective management. However, empirical evidence of the impact of an introduced species can be difficult to obtain, especially when the impact is through competition. Change in species abundance is often slow and gradual, coinciding with environmental change. As a result, negative impacts on native species through competition are poorly documented. An example of the difficulties associated with obtaining empirical evidence of impact due to competition comes from work on the Common Myna (<italic>Acridotheres tristis</italic>). The species is listed in the World’s top 100 worst invaders, despite a lack of empirical evidence of its negative impacts on native species. We assessed the impact of the Common Myna on native bird abundance, using long-term data both pre and post its invasion. At the outset of our investigation, we postulated that Common Myna establishment would negatively affect the abundance of other cavity-nesting species and bird species that are smaller than it. We found a negative relationship between the establishment of the Common Myna and the long-term abundance of three cavity-nesting species (Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, Crimson Rosella, Laughing Kookaburra) and eight small bird species (Striated Paradoxes, Rufous Whistler, Willie Wagtail, Grey Fantail, Magpie-lark, House Sparrow, Silvereye, Common Blackbird). To the best of our knowledge, this finding has never previously been demonstrated at the population level. We discuss the key elements of our success in finding empirical evidence of a species impact and the implications for prioritisation of introduced species for management. Specifically, prioritization of the Common Myna for management over other species still remains a contentious issue.

Regards - David

David McDonald
1004 Norton Road
Wamboin NSW 2620
T: (02) 6238 3706
M: 0416 231 890
F: (02) 9475 4274
E: m("","david");">
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