Noisy Miner Chicks

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Laura's picture
Noisy Miner Chicks

At my school there are alot of Noisy Miners. They hang around in the 5 or 6 gum trees near the rec center. Normally around 3rd term they start breeding somewhere around that area. Their chicks are often found in the bushes around there. Last year the grade 6s used to collect the Noisy Miner chicks and put them in cardboard boxes and look after them. I never knew what happened to those chicks. This year im sure that the same thing will happen. The Miners will breed and we will find there chicks around the school ground. If someone finds a chick normally alot of kids will crowd around the poor thing and some of the boys even try to hurt the chicks. I know that Noisy Miner chicks often leave the nest and their parents will continue to feed them as they hop around. But in our school I think it's dangerous for the chicks because there's dogs before and after school, lots of kids and lots of other people who visit my school cause it's also a park.

What should I do take the chicks and care for them like the grade 6s did last year or just let them be?

Laura's picture

anyone got an answer?


Gidday Laura, you obviously care enough about these babies to put up the post, to be honest Laura I was reluctant to answer as it seems to be a situation where people will say "yes" take them and look after them and some people will say "no" let nature take its course.
Laura I would grab them and look after them because "boys" hurting them and dogs grabbing them is not excactly nature taking its course as I see it.
My best advice is talk to someone that has succeeded in looking after them and have a go at it but only if you are certain that the parents are not looking after them and they are in obvious danger.
When babies first leave the nest their parents will generally keep a close eye on them.
Bottom line Laura,if you think they are in danger give it a go it cannot hurt,but do get advice and do be prepared to put the time in.
If you do give it a go and it gets a bit hard I will try and help as much as possible.
Good on you for caring.

Laura's picture

Thanks alot Tassie. I know what you mean with the some people saying yes and others saying no. The birds haven't started breeding yet but I'm sure that it will probably start soon and I want to be prepared. I've still got to go to school and I'm not sure if my parents would let me care for the birds. The other problem is that I've got a pet cat. He's about 16 and is pretty useless at catching birds, the only thing he's ever caught was maybe 2 sparrows and 3 pigeons. I don't know how he will react to having other animals in the house. A boy in one of the other classes in my year level has a dad who is a vet, so maybe he could help. See nobody else really cares about the wildlife and environment at my school so I don't know who else could care for the chicks. Oh well thanks for your reply.


Hi Laura, sorry for late reply, just got back into town.
Laura I would definately talk to the vet,you can't go wrong.
It is good to see that you care about them.

Laura's picture

Well, I haven't been on here for ages. I remembered this post and thought I would give an up date.

We spotted three nests at school.

One was really annoying cause the miners swooped everyone who walked under the nest. This pair of birds didn't nest.

The second one was very late and could possibly be the first pair trying again. They had chicks but were so high up no one knew they were there. I think those chicks survived.

The third nest was in a really, really bad spot. Only 1.5m high and in the outer part of the bush. The nest was in an area that's used by loads of kids. The birds successfuly had three chicks, but everything went wrong from there. First one chick dissapeared so I looked for it. I found it under the same bush that the nest was in. The poor baby looked terrified and had spent a whole night on the concrete. Then the nest started to fall out of the tree so I got my friend who's taller than me to tie up the nest with a bit of string. Everyone (including teachers) thought I was a bird killer when they were the ones saying let the chicks die :O . So we put the chick on the ground back in the nest and the parents fed it.

Everything was fine until...

The parents and the two chicks left leaving the last chick alone and in a nest that was tilting even worse then it was before. It was time to bring in the cardboard box and take the baby out of the nest. I wanted to take Edward (thats what we decided to name the chick) home with me since I knew how to care for him and I had a bird cage. But, Bec who was the friend who put the nest back in place took him home. At school we fed him sugar and water and he loved it.

The next day Bec told us that little Edward had died from the sugar water filling his lungs. She had tipped him upside down and all this water had dribbled out of his beak.

Everyone was so sad :(

R.I.P Edward

(Sorry for the long post)

Windhover's picture

I am not sure which state you're in. Find your relevant volunteer wildlife care group like WIRES in NSW or Wildlife Victoria or whoever and call them. I would suggest to put the chicks into a cardboard box onto a soft blanket and keep them warm, or at least at a nice room temperature. That is out of cold or excessive heat.

You NEVER force water into the chick's bill. Use an eye dropper and one drop at a time, you touch the TIP OF THE BILL and the chick will take it. It's too easy to get water into the trachea and drown it. Also, while water is good for rehydration, they are primarily honeyeaters, but at the chick stage they eat a lot of insects for protein hence why we use special powders mixed with minced meat and feed them.

So what I just said, finding the right wildlife care group to look after it in future is your best bet. I am sure you are trying to do the right thing etc. but it is easy for a little life to slip away especially when under stress or in the wrong hands (and that is not meant in the wrong way either). :)

Take care.

MynaBirds's picture

Hi Laura,

Firstly sorry about your Myna friend Edward who is in heaven now.

I saw your post about Noisy Myna birds and registered to share what little I have recently learned.

Water and sugar is the wrong food. Especially the water part and sugar is processed.

Try natural honey and banana mashed. Only feed the chick very small amounts. Great care and patience is needed. Watch carefully each time, be very gentle and patient.

I recently found a near dead chick Myna, nursed it back to health and fed it in an incorrect manner and it died. :(

It's breathing had a slight clicking sound, which means it had breathed in some of the food during feeding.

This is totally my fault, because I fed it incorrectly. I now know better.

In addition to correct food, eg fruits, kiwi fruit, apple (mashed so it can easily be swallowed), honey and banana, the chick also needs proper warmth.

The chick I found was placed in a shallow new plastic box, tissues and cotton wool and that on top of flat socks on top of a just warm enough hot water bottle. So the gentlest of warm was coming through.

I pooped a lot, which is good, and the tissues and cotton balls made for an easy clean up each time.

The chick I rescued had about fifty black maggots, and other gross insects infesting it. I very carefully had to give it repeated baths and it recovered fully from this infestation.

Like I said, it was near death.

It would have lived if I had known to feed it properly, the right technique.

Oh and a gentle tap on the nest made it open its mouth, like a parent bird landing.

I did a lot right but it takes just one mistake, and the little life is gone to heaven.

I wouldn't hesitate rescuing another bird, they have awesome personalities, and my one was as tame as.

You are doing the right thing helping these chicks and don't let anyone convince you otherwise.

Hope this helps.

MynaBirds's picture

What kind of forum is this that doesn't allow an edit? :s Good grief! :s


* It pooped a lot, which is good, and the tissues and cotton balls made for an easy clean up each time.

* It was rather cool when I found the chick. Hence the need for warmth.

* The bath water temperature was lukewarm and I watched for any sign of distress.

Laura's picture

Thank you everyone

It wasn't my fault that the chick died, it was my friends. I told them we had to use an eye dropper but one of them thinks she knows everything about birds (which she doesn't) decided to just give the poor chick huge spoon fulls of sugar water. I knew it was wrong but of course no one listened to me because I had never had a bird. She had looked after about four birds and claimed that they all survived (but they actually all died). I went on this south australian recue centers website and it said to give the bird sugar water and then give it fruit and mince but we didn't have any.

Everyone was so upset that little Edward died.

(I'm in Melbourne, Victoria)

MynaBirds's picture

Laura, I hope the next chick gets looked after by you.

I was very upset when my myna chick died. I have since learned more about feeding a chick and bought a glass eye dropper, a myna nest shaped green bowl (an ordinary bowl from one of those $2 style shops, but it cost $5), and also a small bird carrier. So now I am better able to rescue and look after a chick should the occasion present itself.

I believe my myna chick is waiting for me in heaven. It's body has died but it's spirit lives on and flies free. There are pets in heaven and our pets are there!

sammygee's picture

I kNow this is an old post, but LAura, I think you are really sweet for trying to help these babies.
It's great that you have learned from experience. I have saved many types of birds and lost a few :( But so rewarding when you have a free bird flying in your backyard who lands on your shoulder every time you come outside but is free to fly whereever.
keep up the good work and don't let your friends boss you around xx :) sammy

Laura's picture

Thanks Sammy and everyone else who has replied

Sorry I haven't been on for a while. It's because i've been asking my parents to let me have budgies. They've finally agreed. I'm so excited.

I'm in high school now and its right next to a river so i'm hoping there will be some little birds for me to rescue.

Thanks again everyone

MynaBirds's picture

Another six months or so, spring time, at least. Enjoy your new feathery friends!

Laura's picture

Well everybody guess what my family found this morning in our front yard.........a starling!

Now what should we do I've put seed and bread infront of it and it ate some. I also put some on the front lawn to try and attract the other starlings to come down and get the other starling to come out. So far it hasn't worked.

What should I do?

Laura's picture

Well everybody guess what my family found this morning in our front yard.........a starling!

Now what should we do I've put seed and bread infront of it and it ate some. I also put some on the front lawn to try and attract the other starlings to come down and get the other starling to come out. So far it hasn't worked.

What should I do?

MynaBirds's picture

Laura, I am assuming it is a chick you found. If it hasn't been "rescued" by its parents within a couple of hours or if you see a cat, then you have a new pet!

As to food, it depends on its age.

Can you add a photo of the bird, a close up? That would convey a lot of information.

You can upload an image here for example:

Good news for the Starling that it is near a person who cares and is prepared to help.

Laura's picture

The starling is OK everyone. The little fella had some bread and has flown off (we think, we can't see him anymore). I'll check again in the bushes to see if he really has left.

MynaBirds's picture

Good to hear that it is fine. Always better for a bird not to need help. The preferred outcome.

Maybe add a bird bath to your back yard? Not difficult and it will attract birds.

Anything that is like a large plastic bin lid off the ground will work. Something home made, adapted is suitable.

I keep an eye out too for birds in need. I have everything ready to assist, should such happen.

MynaBirds's picture

A tiny noisey myna is perched on my point finger left hand as I type with my right hand.

I found it about three hours ago near a small tree close to the rubbish bins awaiting collection on the street verge.

The parent was close by. I decided to intervene as this is a somewhat busy street close to where the tiny bird was, about a metre away.

Also the bins will land every which way tomorrow and so there was every chance that the bird would be injured.

It has adapted rather quickly and enjoyed a drop of water, honey and banana. Less than a drop. It loves to rest.

It smells a bit, even after a brief water bath, to clean and loosen any bugs. It is pretty healthy.

I plan to raise it and then let it go back into the wild. I don't have a bird cage but I do have a nice nest and eye dropper etc for it.

Oh and I decided to name it B#, B sharp, for it makes a loud chirp and there is no B# in music, so a bit of humor.

Araminta's picture

Hi all, Laura, what a beautiful girl you are!! I have just talked to my daughter about what they do with baby birds? She works at an Animal Emergency Centre,lots of people bring in birds,(most of then should have been left where they were found,mum would have looked after them on the ground). But, at the centre they feed something, produced by a company called: WOMBAROO, they have differend mixes for juvenile birds,that just have to be mixed with water.The lable gives instructions .Look them up on the net.Keep up the good work Laura!


MynaBirds's picture

My chirpy visitor ...

"Australian Noisy Myna Bird, also know as a Soldier Bird. Fledgling, rescued about 48 hours earlier. Taken outside to get a bit of sun. Can't fly yet, but learning fast. Fed with an eye dropper, at side of mouth, mix of honey, water, cherry juice and pet shop insect food (just add water and stir). I've named him/her B#. though in music a B is next to a C, so no sharp or flat, so a bit of musical humor, hitting the right note I hope! ;)"

MynaBirds's picture

72 hour, day 3 report. B# (be sharp) is alive and well despite my failure to feed him/her the first time about 75% of the time.

B# is resting, on my left index finger, which by coincidence doesn't affect my typing speed at all :P

B# has moved away from eye dropper drinking and now swallows banana, insect mix, and various berries, especially cherries, administered at the end of the eye dropper.

The food is about half a pea size and kind of pressed onto the end of the eye dropper. The berries are sized and dried with a serviette. This will hopefully prevent aspiration (breathing in liquid). B# eats the berry pulp.

B# now knows how to drink from a dripping tap. I desperately want B# to self feed, as his/her appetite is about that of a whole banana a day - yes seriously.

B# knows no fear, none. Races around and then takes aim and flies. The record is about 40cms so far.

B# has some of my boots which are close to each other and that enables perch hop flying practise.

If I let my guard down B# will hop fly up my arm onto my shoulder. I don't like that, as B# is always pruning.

My greatest concern is aspiration, as the sheer volume of food needed, and the challenge of feeding.

I read that fledglings take about two weeks to become independent, so eleven days or so to go.

B# has two chirps, one is "feed me" and the is other is "I'm full - content".

The yellow in the feathers are becoming more vivid. I do think B# is getting bigger too. Sometimes B# will just stare at me with an open mouth - I wounder who is training whom!!!

MynaBirds's picture
FlyBeFree's picture

How long did you have the bird before attempting to release it?

I would try to let the bird socialize. Take it outside and let it do its thing but be nearby for protection.


My experience is as follows:

When I rescued B# (noisy miner) I would have the parents visiting almost daily. They never forgot their family member. I did this by having B# near a window where its family could see it.

After a week of intensive care and training, B# was able to fly a good two meters and was immediately welcomed back into its family upon release.

My avatar is B# (be sharp), a Noisy Miner I rescued and released. :)

Jo1234's picture

My sister actually found it at her work, she works in a Child Care Centre so there are a lot of children around. She gave it to my mother to look after so she could feed it regularly. They have attempted to release it a number of times unfortunately it could not be kept with its parents due to the heavy rain and bad storms. They tried to release it where its family was but it was attacked and it flew back to them. The first attempt to release it was as soon as it could fly and a few times since. It has been left in a cage near the family but they still act agressively towards it. It flies a short distance away but flies back to my mother when it gets scared or is attacked. If they just release it will the other birds kill it?

FlyBeFree's picture

Perhaps daily outings. Take the bird outside daily for some fresh air and let it do its thing. Over time it should be seen by other birds and may even interact with them. It should also learn to live there and not in a cage. Can it be outside at night, even in a cage hung up safely?

Does the bird sit on your finger? I never caged my B# (my noisy miner). If so, take it outside like that. B# was content to sit on my finger even outside.

A cage is no place for a Noisy Miner. It is learning the wrong way of living. I do understand that such may be necessary, but nevertheless, it will affect the bird adversely.

Seeing as the other birds attack it, and it flees back to you, yes it would seem they will kill it without you there to protect it. It seems to have lost its bird family and is now wholly reliant upon you.

All the best.

My avatar is B# (be sharp), a Noisy Miner I rescued and released. :)

Jo1234's picture

Hi again

I didn't really explain properly, we (by we I really mean my mother and sister I did not find it I just was looking on the web to help them out)only put it in the cage so the others could get used to it without being able to attack it so it could be around them as the first time the other noisy miners held it down and attacked it. It is not in a cage inside it only has a box kind of basket thing with a branch in it that it sleeps in at night (otherwise it won't settle). It has daily outings where it goes out flies around and pecks at the trees and even tries to catch insects but it gets scared and flies back to my mother it just sits on her shoulder or head and comes back inside with her. It could fly away if it wanted to. Yes it sits on mum's finger. It has made friends with the doves that come around. Well thank you for your help you sound like a very caring person. B# is very cute and lucky that you found it. Many thanks.

FlyBeFree's picture

Hi, B# is free, only had it for a week, but that was full on.

It seems your bird has adopted you. As long as it is free to choose where to live, and if it chooses you, well the choice is made.

When I released B# it was immediately welcomed back into the flock.

All the best with you new family member. One day it may leave the nest.

My avatar is B# (be sharp), a Noisy Miner I rescued and released. :)

warlocker's picture

Hi Jo

A friend of ours who is an acknowledged expert on Australian Miner birds has told us that the attack instinct of a crew of established Miner birds in relation to a lone stranger Miner bird will not result in them killing the new arrival.
They will gang up on the newbie and try to pin him down onto the ground where one or more of them will peck and tussle with the newbie.
This is their way of establishing their dominace of the newcomer.
It looks like a tough way to gain entrance to their crew I know. But our friend assures us that this is how an established crew of Miners allow a new arrival into their ranks.
Once the 'initiation' is over they wil no longer attack the newbie and he will find his place in their 'pecking' order.
Our Miner is out and about in the garden every day, and at first he got swooped on and attcked a lot...poor little bird was very scared, used to fly back and cower on our shoulders all the time. But now, a few months later he is happy to spend all day outside and has made our back garden his territory. He's much braver now at 8 months old and is used to the others birds who live in and around our garden. He even drives off some other birds, including the occasional Miner. Twice now he has not returned and has stayed out alone all night long, only to return the next morning. (Those free breakfasts we give him must be hard to pass up.) A company called Wombaroo makes Insectivore and Nectivore and Lorikeet rearing and condition food (that's a dry feed only, made by Avione.) We leave our back door open and our Miner is free to fly in and out as he chooses. We put a large but shallow bowl of water on the balcony for him to bathe and splash around in. Miners love to bathe and will often do so twice a day.
As I've mentioned in another post there is a great deal of information available on the internet about Miner/Mynah birds, including what they can and cannot eat.
Google is your friend.

Chers: Vin

Jo1234's picture

Thanks Vin, that is ver reassuring. My mother used to let it out during the day and it always came back. One day it flew off and didn't come back and she has been very depressed since. I will let her know that there is a good chance it was accepted back into the group. Thanks again, Jo

warlocker's picture

My pleasure, Jo.

It's spring now, you might notice a lot more Miner activiety than normal. It's their breeding and nesting season. Around Xmas time is the birthing season for many of them.
Our miner has been gone for a few days. We suspect that his instinct to mate has overpowered his wanting to stay with us.
That's completly natural, we didn't expect him to stay with us this long. We're sorry to see him go but we're happy for him. Every wild creature deserves to be free.

Cheers: Vin

birdie's picture

Hey vin..... as annoying as they can be...I love to observe my Noisy Miner troop and their behaviours.... I was watching 3 young fledglings the other day and it is great to see how the how brigade joins in the feeding and caring of them.I have seen them protect other breeds of birds too when danger is about and they are great for letting me know when there is a danger such as a cat or snake. ( my cat hates them of course but they have it all over her LOL). They are annoying at times but a very interesting bird to study that is for sure.

Sunshine Coast Queensland

traceyann33's picture

Hi everyone, thank you so much to everyone who has posted here, we live in Tweed Heads and have just found a new chick that was on the ground in the gutter. Having reared Budgies I would say its only a few days old.

It was only found yesterday so we have put it in an Icecream container with woodshavings( I have guinea pigs) and hay for warmth and it has a light over it for continuous warmth. We have been feeding it mince mixed with bolied egg and Wombaroo Insectavore raising mix.

It seems to be thriving today and attempting to stand, and yes when we tap the container its mouth opens wide, we are just using a blunt plastic ladel and holding it near its mouth and the chick is taking the food from us, I felt this was safer as I knew the dangers of aspiration and baby animals.

We are feeding it every this enough?? and are hoping to release it when old enough as I have a cat and it will otherwise have to be caged which is not fair on it.

warlocker's picture

Hi Traceyann

Sounds like you're doing okay in the feeding department.
The baby will need water also, when our's was a chick it drank droplets of water from the end of our finger.One or two drops at a time was enough.

If the baby is chirping a lot, that's a sign it wants food.
When it's had enough food or water it will simply refuse to accept anymore.
Make sure the wood shavings aren't from pine wood. Pine wood is noted for:

.....Pine; We read an article about Pine and Cedar containing compounds that can cause lung or sinus problems. But the article was about bedding like shavings put in bottoms of animal cages; more common for hampsters and other pets; rarely for parrots or cockatiels. When we listed pine above, that meant as perch wood which this page is geared for. Also be certain that the pine for bird perches is dry pine that aged for as much as a year or two. Otherwise the pitch in the pine will be an awful thing for bird feathers......


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