Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide


Acridotheres fuscus
(jungle myna)



Acridotheres fuscus (jungle myna)


  • Last modified
  • 04 October 2022
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Acridotheres fuscus
  • Preferred Common Name
  • jungle myna
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Metazoa
  •     Phylum: Chordata
  •       Subphylum: Vertebrata
  •         Class: Aves
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • Acridotheres fuscus is native to India and south-east Asia and is now established in many Pacific islands. Acridotherea can be translated as "grasshopper hunter" - presumably an indication of its major food source in some parts of its nativ...

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Acridotheres fuscus (Wagler, 1827)

Preferred Common Name

  • jungle myna

International Common Names

  • Spanish: mainá hindú
  • French: martin forestier

Local Common Names

  • Czech Republic: majna hnedá
  • Denmark: brun maina
  • Finland: viidakkomaina
  • Germany: Dschungelmaina
  • Italy: maina della giungla indiana
  • Japan: morihakka
  • Netherlands: junglemaina
  • Poland: majna szara
  • Samoa: maina vao

Summary of Invasiveness

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Acridotheres fuscus is native to India and south-east Asia and is now established in many Pacific islands. Acridotherea can be translated as "grasshopper hunter" - presumably an indication of its major food source in some parts of its native region. It is perceived as a problem to agricultural sectors dependant on crops. Both rural villages and urban areas are at risk of invasion. They feed off rubbish and food scraps and nest in any available spaces in houses and buildings. This behaviour and their close association with human habitations combine to cause a wide variety of problems for humans.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Metazoa
  •         Phylum: Chordata
  •             Subphylum: Vertebrata
  •                 Class: Aves
  •                     Order: Passeriformes
  •                         Family: Sturnidae
  •                             Genus: Acridotheres
  •                                 Species: Acridotheres fuscus


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The jungle myna is a 22 to 24cm grey-brownish bird with a tuft of feathers forming a small crest on the forehead and at the base of the bill which is not normally present on the common Indian myna (Acridotheres tristis). It has a black head with the upper areas being more grey-brown and the chin, breast and belly dark ashy-grey. It has a whitish underside, brownish wings and a typical yellow-orange beak. The jungle myna is sleeker than the common Indian myna and lacks the distinguishing yellow patch of skin on the posterior side of the eye. Interestingly, the colour of its iris is yellow in northern India, whereas in southern India, its bluish-white (Feare and Craig, 1999).


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Known introduced range: The jungle myna is now also established on some Pacific Islands, including Fiji, Tonga and Samoa (PIERCE 2005). There are new records of both the common myna (Acridotheres tristis) and the jungle myna on tropical islands, most recently on Kiribati (Teariki 2003, in Pierce 2005).

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Last updated: 17 Dec 2021
Continent/Country/Region Distribution Last Reported Origin First Reported Invasive Reference Notes


Hong KongPresentIntroduced1990

North America

United StatesPresentIntroduced1981


American SamoaPresentIntroduced1985
Christmas IslandPresentIntroduced1904
TongaPresentIntroducedInvasiveFirst reported: early 1980s
Wallis and FutunaPresentIntroduced2007


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Jungle mynas are known to inhabit altitudes as high 2000m above sea level. However, they prefer lowlands and foothills of well-wooded deciduous, spacious areas which primarily includes tea plantations, villages and coastal plains (Feare & Craig 1999).

Habitat List

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Terrestrial ManagedCultivated / agricultural land Present, no further details
Terrestrial ManagedManaged forests, plantations and orchards Principal habitat
Terrestrial ManagedUrban / peri-urban areas Present, no further details
Terrestrial Natural / Semi-naturalNatural forests Principal habitat

Biology and Ecology

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Mynas are scavengers with a varied omnivorous diet consisting of insects, fruit, seeds and nectar. Mynas also devour insect pests on sheep and cattle, such as ticks (Oliver 1955, Roots 1976). Analysis showed that their stomach content consisted predominantly of grasshopper remains, as well as crickets, termites, beetles, ants, caterpillars and fly larvae. (Hails 1985; Kang et al. 1990; Feare & Craig 1999).

In southern India, breeding occurs during the months between February to May, while in the northern regions, April to June-July (Feare & Craig 1999). Typically, two broods are raised at one time with the clutch being 3-6 eggs in size. It is known that both sexes participate in the rearing of their young (Feare & Craig 1999).

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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Introduction pathways to new locations
Acclimatisation societies:
Taken to botanical garden/zoo:

Local dispersal methods
Escape from confinement:
Natural dispersal (local): Escaped mynas breed in the wild.

Pathway Causes

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Impact Summary

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Biodiversity (generally) Negative
Crop production Negative


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General Impacts

Compiled by IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG)
Jungle mynas may affect growers of commercial crops due to their love of fruit (Atkinson & Atkinson, 2000). In addition, there is concerns that this species may compete for nest sites with native species.

Risk and Impact Factors

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  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Capable of securing and ingesting a wide range of food
  • Benefits from human association (i.e. it is a human commensal)
Impact outcomes
  • Negatively impacts agriculture
  • Threat to/ loss of native species
Impact mechanisms
  • Competition - monopolizing resources
  • Herbivory/grazing/browsing


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Mynas are scavengers (Hails 1985, Kang et al. 1990). They can also kill numerous injurious insects, such as sheep and cattle ticks (Oliver 1955, Roots 1976).

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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Both Acridotheres fuscus and A. javanicus have crests, and generally look similar except that A. fuscus has an orange bill with a deep blue base, whereas A. javanicus has a yellow bill, with no blue base (Robson C. 2000). The two species were at one time considered two subspecies: A. f. javanicus and A. f. torquatus (Lever C. 1987).
The jungle myna Acridotheres fuscus is similar to the common myna A. tristis, but is darker and slimmer, with an orange beak and no yellow skin around the eye. Both species have large white patches in the wings and tail.

Prevention and Control

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Due to the variable regulations around (de)registration of pesticides, your national list of registered pesticides or relevant authority should be consulted to determine which products are legally allowed for use in your country when considering chemical control. Pesticides should always be used in a lawful manner, consistent with the product's label.

Management Information

Compiled by IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG)

Poisons such as avicides (starlacide DRC1339) were used against the jungle myna (Acridotheres fuscus) with highly promising outcomes, in contrast to narcotics (Alphachloralose), herbicide and pesticide. Trapping is a commonly employed tactic. A variety of foraging traps are used. These include the Tidemann trap, decoy trap and the Kadavu trap. In addition, shooting and netting methods are sometimes used (Pierce, 2005).


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Avibase, undated. The world bird database: Jungle Myna (Acridotheres fuscus) (Wagler, 1827)

Bomford, M., 2003. Risk Assessment for the Import and Keeping of Exotic Vertebrates in Australia. Bureau of Rural Sciences, Canberra.

Feare, C., and A. Craig. 1999. Starlings and mynas. Illustrated by Barry Croucher, Chris Shields and Kamol Komolphalin. Princeton University Press Princeton New Jersey

Freifeld, H.B.; Steadman, D.W. and Sailerb, J.K. 2001. Landbirds on Offshore Islands in Samoa, Journal of Field Ornithology 72(1): 72–85.

Heather B.D.; Robertson H.A. 2000. The new field guide to the birds of New Zealand. Viking, Auckland.

Lever, C. 1987. Naturalized birds of the world. Wiley

Meyer, J. Y. 2000. Invasive plants in the Pacific Islands. In: The Invasive Species in the Pacific: A Technical Review and Draft Regional Strategy. Sherley, G. (tech. ed). Published in June 2000 by the South Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP).

Peacock, D.S., van Renburg, B.J., Robertson, M.P. 2007. The distribution and spread of the invasive alien common myna, Acridotheres tristis L. (Aves: Sturnidae), in southern Africa, South African Journal of Science 103(11-12): pp. 465-473.

Robson, C. 2000. A Guide to the birds of Southeast Asia: Thailand, Peninsular Malaysia, Singapore, Myanmar, Laos, Vietnam and Cambodia. Princeton University Press.

Samoa's starlings. Unknown. In: P. Craig (Ed.), Natural History Guide To American Samoa. Dept. Marine and Wildlife Resources: Pago Pago, American Samoa

Links to Websites

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GISD/IASPMR: Invasive Alien Species Pathway Management Resource and DAISIE European Invasive Alien Species Gateway source for updated system data added to species habitat list.
Global register of Introduced and Invasive species (GRIIS) source for updated system data added to species habitat list.


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    Reviewed by: Dr. Charlotte Yap Aye May and Dr. Navjot S Sodhi, Department of Biological Sciences, National University of Singapore. Singapore
    Compiled by: IUCN/SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group (ISSG). Major updates with support from the Overseas Territories Environmental Programme (OTEP) project XOT603, a joint project with the Cayman Islands Government - Department of Environment
    Last Modified: Thursday, 19 November 2009

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