R.I.P. Vancouver crested mynas
From ANIMAL PEOPLE, April 2003–
VANCOUVER, B.C.–The usual fate of introduced species, even
if they thrive for a time, is to die out eventually from inability
to cope with the climate changes, predators, diseases, and food
competition in their new habitat.
Vancouver Sun reporter Larry Pynn on March 1 eulogized such a
“A native of China and Indochina,” Pynn wrote, “the crested
myna was introduced to Vancouver in the 1890s, perhaps arriving as
stowaways aboard a ship or as pets released by Chinese immigrants.
By the 1920s they numbered in the thousands, living as far afield as
Ladner and New Westminster.”
The USDA warned in 1935 that “Every precaution should be
taken to check the spread of this species and prevent its spread into
the U.S.,” but Canada was then much more tolerant of Asian
immigrants, both animal and human, and did nothing to stop the
mynas from doing as they would.
Besides, from about 1930 on, the Canadian myna population
was in slow decline, not spreading, coinciding with increasing
motor vehicle traffic.
The last two, a mated pair, were apparently hit by cars within days
of each other in February 2003.