Biological Invasions

, Volume 16, Issue 8, pp 1659–1674 | Cite as

The native versus alien dichotomy: relative impact of native noisy miners and introduced common mynas

  • Kathryn M. HaythorpeEmail author
  • Darren Burke
  • Danielle Sulikowski
Original Paper


Human activity can dramatically affect biodiversity, often by introducing non-native species, or by increasing the abundance of a small number of native species. Management strategies aimed at conserving biodiversity need to be informed by the actual impacts of highly abundant species, whether native or introduced. In this study we examined characteristics of two bird species, introduced common mynas and native noisy miners, both of which are highly abundant in urbanised areas along the East coast of Australia. Current managerial practices have a strong focus on eradication of common mynas, while noisy miners are largely ignored. However, in this study noisy miners were found in a broader range of habitats, and in greater abundance, than common mynas; displayed more aggressive behaviour; and were linked to a decline in the diversity and abundance of other species where common mynas were not. We suggest that the adaptability of a species and the variety of habitats it can colonise may be a better predictor of its potential impact, than whether it is native or introduced.


Aggression Manorina melanocephala Species abundance Sturnus tristis 



All work was conducted under the Newcastle University Animal Ethics Committee ethics protocols A-2008-173 and A-2011-103. This work was supported by a grant from the Lake Macquarie City Council to KMH. Thanks to numerous volunteers for significant help with field work, in particular Grace Bourke and Terry Bignell.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kathryn M. Haythorpe
    • 1
    Email author
  • Darren Burke
    • 2
  • Danielle Sulikowski
    • 1
  1. 1.School of PsychologyCharles Sturt UniversityBathurstAustralia
  2. 2.School of PsychologyUniversity of NewcastleOurimbahAustralia

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