Meanwhile back in Australia Andrew has been taking some picture of Indian Mynas for me to work with. I love his observation notes of this specific twitch:
Stalked mynahs in the South Melbourne Market’s carpark for an hour, baiting them with bits of sausage roll. I have sausage roll grease coating the inside of my mouth and my hands. No luck at Macca’s or at the Preston Market. Weird. Walked around the streets of Preston south and thought a lot about ideal mynah habitats. Noticed that they like to perch places and bounce their calls off hard surfaces like tile or brick. They like open areas in the sun, with a good lookout above. They don’t go as high as crows, or as exposed. Starlings like undergrowth and shade. Sparrows .... just plucky. Hard to get close to Preston mynahs more than 4 m or so—they keep hopping away and looking over their shoulders.
At South Melbourne Markets they have an undercover loading dock for all the produce. Noticed straight away that the mynahs, sparrows and pidgeons were all ducking in under the roof and having a great old time. Not so good for photos though. A stroke of brilliance was putting their carpark on the roof. Mynahs feel really secure there and there’s lots of stuff dropped out of cars for them. They can get away from trouble by going under parked cars, or make a break for the fence that separates the market’s roof top from the carpark. I got some great shots, could get closer it seems cause they are used to people walking around.
Leftover trashy food had eluded me ... thinking I could go back to the markets, get some take-away chinese, or salad, or more sausage rolls and leave them in strategic places. The little buggers are really canny though—they know you are watching them, and always keep a safe distance between you and them. Didn’t like the bits of sausage roll I tried to bait them with. Checked it out, didn’t even touch it. They see or sense intention, I think.