Javan Myna Acridotheres javanicus


Justification of Red List Category
Widespread and illegal trade is apparently resulting in a rapid population reduction, qualifying this species as Vulnerable (Eaton et al. 2015)

Population justification
The population size is preliminarily estimated to fall in the band 2,500-9,999 mature individuals. based on the recent records for wild populations within Java and Bali. Introduced populations are considerably larger. In Singapore, although there have been fluctuations, the population was estimated as 168,000 individuals in 2000 (Yap 2003) and in Taiwan an estimate of over 20,000 was made in 1999 (Lin Rueyshing 2001).

Trend justification
Within the native wild range of the species the population has declined rapidly within the recent past to the point where this formerly abundant bird is very infrequently seen, and many recent records appear to derive from escaped captive birds (Eaton et al. 2015). Very large numbers have previously been trapped within the native range to supply the cage bird trade (Chng et al. 2015). The emergence of bird-farms to supply the market within the last few years, which are now the source of many traded individuals (Burung Indonesia in litt. 2016), appears to be a response to supply problems and coincided with the sudden difficulty of observing the species in the wild on Java. Supply from wild-caught birds is continuing as evidenced by the recent seizures of illegally traded birds coming into Java from Kalimantan and Sumatra (S. Chng in litt. 2016), which are considered to come from the large introduced populations of the species outside of the native range.

Distribution and population

Javan Myna is naturally found only on Java and Bali, but has established introduced populations in Taiwan, Singapore, Thailand, Sumatra, Lesser Sundas and Puerto Rico and may be established in Japan (Craig and Feare 2016).


Occurred throughout cultivated, grassy areas and scrub on Java and Bali and often occurred in urban areas, playing fields and airfields (Craig and Feare 2016). Introduced populations occur principally in urban areas, where they may be considered a pest (Yap and Sodhi 2004).


Populations of the species within its natural range (Java and Bali [Craig and Feare 2016b]) have declined rapidly as a result of trapping for the bird trade, and possible through the effect of pesticide use (Eaton et al.2015). It is reported that the species is now only seen infrequently, and often these reports are likely to be escapes (Chng et al. 2015, J. Eaton in litt. 2016). Very large numbers are being supplied from Sumatra to Java but the population within the species native range has declined considerably and the species is now only seen infrequently. The decline is almost entirely attributed to capture for the wild bird market, and 2054 individuals were counted in a three day inventory of birds openly for sale at the main markets on Java (Chng et al. 2015). It is possible that birds from the introduced (and flourishing) population on Peninsular Malaysia are actually now being used to supply birds for the trade back to Java.

Conservation actions

Trade in this species is currently complicated due to the large numbers being captive-bred for the market within the native range and likely at other locations, plus large established populations in non-native areas being caught and illegally traded back into the native range. The volume of trade in the species is high, and there seems little disincentive for those with the opportunity to continue to capture birds from within the native range. Clarity over what constitutes legal trade and then legitimising and enforcing this process against the supply of wild-caught birds is required. Efforts to confiscate shipments of the species that are clearly in contravention of current laws must continue.


21cm. A blackish, noisy and active myna with white bases to the primaries, a white vent and white tips to the tail feathers. Bill and legs are yellow and the iris is pale whitish-yellow, in contrast to the dark eye of A. grandis. 


Text account compilers
Butchart, S. & Ekstrom, J.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2018) Species factsheet: Acridotheres javanicus. Downloaded from on 20/09/2018. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2018) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 20/09/2018.