The Javan Mynas Acridotheres javanicus, also known as the white-vented myna and the buffalo myna, is a myna, a member of the Starling family.
It is conspecific (of, or belonging to, the same species), and thought to be in competition with the Common or Indian Myna (A. tristis) in some of its range (for example, India, Malaysia, and Singapore).
There is some confusion over naming between A. grandis and A. javanicus, which was until recently considered a subspecies of the Pale-bellied Myna, A. cinereus.
Distribution / Range
It is a successful species in much of Southeast Asia and has penetrated into India and neighbouring regions.
The Javan Myna is considered a pest, especially in urban areas which they prefer. They deposit droppings over buildings and even on unsuspecting human beings. Their roost also contaminates the ground below by the droppings. Apart from that, they are also a source of noise pollution and are capable of spreading zoonoses. Singapore bans the sale of these birds, only when they come from plantations.
Call / Vocalization
The Javan Myna has an extremely liquid voice and, like the European starling, incorporates imitation into its repertoire (though it is not able to imitate the human voice, like the hill myna Gracula religiosa).
The Javan myna is predominantly black, with a white vest, a white wing patch, white on the underside of the tail, and a thick yellow eye ring, legs, and beak. It sometimes has grey/ white flecking on its belly.
It can raise the feathers on its forehead into a dramatic crest.
Diet / Feeding
Like other Sturnids it is omnivorous, roosts in colonies, and is abundantly successful in a variety of habitats. Javan mynas are as accomplished in cities as they are in padi fields, where they will prey on insects disturbed by water buffalo, often riding the buffalo like the related oxpecker.