Bendigo Advertiser letters to the editor

Explosion of Indian Myna birds across region

I write in the hope of raising public awareness about the population explosion of the introduced species, Indian (common) Myna birds in the Bendigo region over the last 12 months.

I doubt that there are official statistics available for the area, but I and other local bird enthusiasts noticed a dramatic increase in their numbers during 2017. They are rife in Eaglehawk, but until 2017, we had never seen the birds in Woodvale. They have extended as far out as this area in the last six months.

The breed is renowned for its hardiness and veracity, being responsible for the elimination of native birds all over the world due in part, to their practice of ejecting other birds’ eggs and or young from nests. 

A 30-year study was conducted in the Canberra area in 2004 which established that the influx of Indian Myna birds had resulted in a decrease in 11 species of birds including the Sulphur-crested Cockatoo, the Crimson Rosella and the Kookaburra. The research is available at http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0040622.

As the birds nest in tree cavities, they also compete with small tree-dwelling marsupials like the feather-tailed glider. A very informative ABC article is available at http://www.abc.net.au/science/articles/2004/04/08/2044900.htm

In the Canberra area, the local council distributes specially designed cages for trapping the birds and collects them for humane disposal. I have written to the City of Greater Bendigo suggesting that a similar program be implemented here.

In the meantime, anyone concerned can obtain a cage from the Yarra Indian Myna Action Group at https://www.yimag.org.au/  

These are discussed in the ABC article.

Bendigo has an extraordinary variety of native bird life – start having a look around at how many Indian Mynas there are in your area and ask yourself if that’s all you’re happy to see – the problem is only going to get worse if we do nothing about it.

Jennifer Heinrich, Woodvale 

Bendigo landfill prices unclear for all

Today I went to the local landfill with a ute containing green waste, plus an old couch and a small table for a neighbor.

I first went to the recovery yard where they took the little table and said the rest could go to the landfill in which I did.

I said it was all green waste plus the old couch. I was told to follow the blue signs and dump the couch and then come back and empty the green waste in the appropriate area.

After I had emptied the green waste I then returned where I was told the cost was $25.60 – I said how much was the couch? They couldn't tell me. I said how much was the green waste? They couldn't tell me that either.

Over the last few months I have been taking quite a bit of green waste of similar quantity and haven't paid any more than $9.

It makes the cost of the couch $16.60.

It's no wonder that people dump rubbish out in the bush when they have to pay exorbitant costs like this. A fee is charged when dumping mattresses, then why can't a fee be put in place for things such as this.

Nothing has changed with the new councillors and the reappointment of the CEO.

There needs to be plenty of money to cover the big spending decisions that are in noway in the best interest of the community.

Ivan Kitt, Bendigo

Letters to the editor guidelines: A letter to the editor is one way to have your say. All letters must be signed and carry the name, full address and daytime telephone number(s) of the author. We will publish the writer’s name and suburb/town. In rare cases, we may consent to withholding a writer’s name and suburb/town. Letters should be no more than 250 words and may be edited for space, clarity and legal reasons. Shorter letters will be given preference. Letters which are deemed inappropriate will not be published.