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Myna Bird

November 11, 2022

Myna birds, of the starling family, are numerous in species. They are native to Southern India, particularly India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, but also found in China, Malaysia, and Australia.

Myna birds are fascinating creatures. While the common Myna is considered an invasive species, they are beautiful and possess the capacity to mimic human speech. Their diet is carnivorous, typically consisting of fruit and insects.

Interesting Facts:

  • The myna plays an interesting symbolic role in the great British thinker Aldous Huxley's last novel, Island. This role has to do with present-moment awareness and attention.
  • Mynas can be classified into Jungle and Hill Mynas, True Mynas, and Gracupica Mynas.
  • Mynas have an incredibly long history, dating back millions of years to the ancestors of the common and wattled starlings.
  • Mynas can only mimic human speech when in captivity.
  • The Bali Myna is a critically endangered species of starling/myna.
  • "Myna" is derived from the Hindi "mainā" which in turn is derived from the Sanskrit "madanā," meaning "joyful and delightful" with a root meaning of "bubbles."
  • Mynas are medium-sized birds, having strong feet, an extroverted social style, and strong, direct flight.
  • Mynas prefer wide open country as a habitat.
  • Most mynas nest in holes.
  • Not only are Mynas able to mimic the human voice, but they can imitate virtually any sound they choose. This notion of "choice" or "agency" underscores the inimitable intelligence of this family of birds and birds as a whole.
  • Mynas' lifespan is typically 15-20 years.


1 Comment

  1. James Holland

    In Thailand at the out door bistros have mynas in cages in holes in hedges around the perimeter. There speaking in Thai recite phrases for the amusement of the diners. It really catches the newcomer off guard as the look around trying to fine the speaker.


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