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Acridotheres tristis -Sydney, Australia-8.jpg
Common myna (Acridotheres tristis)
Scientific classification

The myna (/ˈmnə/; also spelled mynah) is a bird of the starling family (Sturnidae). This is a group of passerine birds which are native to southern Asia, especially India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. Several species have been introduced to areas like North America, Australia, South Africa, Fiji and New Zealand, especially the common myna, which is often regarded as an invasive species. It is often known as "Selarang" and "Teck Meng" in Malay and Chinese respectively in Singapore, having a high population there.

Mynas are not a natural group;[1] instead, the term myna is used for any starling in the Indian subcontinent, regardless of their relationships. This range was colonized twice during the evolution of starlings, first by rather ancestral starlings related to the coleto and Aplonis lineages, and millions of years later by birds related to the common starling and wattled starling's ancestors. These two groups of mynas can be distinguished in the more terrestrial adaptions of the latter, which usually also have less glossy plumage, except on the heads, and longer tails. The Bali myna, which is critically endangered and nearly extinct in the wild, is highly distinctive.

Some mynas are considered talking birds, for their ability to reproduce sounds, including human speech, when in captivity.

Myna is derived from the Hindi language mainā which itself is derived from Sanskrit madanā.[2][3]


Mynas are medium-sized passerines with strong feet. Their flight is strong and direct, and they are gregarious. Their preferred habitat is fairly open country, and they eat insects and fruit.

Plumage is typically dark, often brown, although some species have yellow head ornaments. Most species nest in holes.

Some species have become well known for their imitative skills; the common hill myna is one of these.


The following are species of mynas. The coleto and the two Saroglossa starlings are included because of their position in the taxonomic list.

Jungle and hill mynas[edit]

"True" mynas[edit]

"Gracupica" mynas[edit]

The following species are often included in the Acridotheres mynas:


  1. ^ Zuccon et al. 2006.
  2. ^ "myna". Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged (11th ed.). Retrieved November 22, 2012 – via
  3. ^ "myna". New Oxford American Dictionary.


  • Zuccon, Dario; Cibois, Alice; Pasquet, Eric; Ericson, Per G. P. (2006). "Nuclear and mitochondrial sequence data reveal the major lineages of starlings, mynas and related taxa". Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution. 41 (2): 333–344. doi:10.1016/j.ympev.2006.05.007. PMID 16806992.

External links[edit]