30 Nov 2016

American Samoans trap thousands of mynas

9:50 am on 30 November 2016

American Samoa's Department of Marine and Wildlife Resources has trapped thousands of myna birds over the past few months as part of its eradication programme.

Visiting myna expert Susana Cruz has set up a network of volunteers across the territory to trap and kill birds which have helped themselves to fruit, crops and other birds and insects.

Ms Cruz, from the Canary islands, was in American Samoa for a year and designed a trap which was distributed to volunteers.

In just a couple of months the group was able to trap about 2600 birds.

DMWR Assistant Biologist Avele Lalogafu'afu'a has continued the eradication project .

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Photo: 123 RF

He told KHJ News more than 5,000 birds have been trapped but some of the trappers failed to document their catches.

From the 40 traps which were distributed only 20 are in active use.

DMWR has collected some of the traps because volunteers failed to follow guidelines for their use, especially documenting the number of birds they trap.

Most of the myna traps are on the west side of the island with the farthest placed in Afao village.

Avele says a myna trapper in the village of Futiga has reported seeing fewer birds on his property and he has seen native bird species which he hadn't seen for a long time.

DMWR is collating accurate numbers of trapped mynas before releasing a full report.