Both books agree that the numbers of truly wild starlings, also known as Rothschild’s mynah are desperately low, perhaps as few a ten animals, or maybe none at all, all confined (if there) to the Taman Nasional Bali Barat park in the island’s western region. Lonely Planets spells it out after telling the reader about release attempts from the pre-release centre in the national park. “
This proved impossible. Despite heroic efforts by some staff members, birds were often killed by predatory falcons, while countless other were stolen from the centre by armed thieves.” The “armed thieves” bit is what caught my eye. The reasons for the theft is not hard to seek. Birds, according to Lonely Plants, can fetch USD $700 each.