Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Robin White-Wig

There was a post recently at Bootstrap Analysis about mutations in wildlife in the Chernobyl area. In barn swallows, albino head feathers were much more frequent.

I couldn't recall ever noticing albinism in any birds before this spring. But this spring, a robin with albino plumage on the head appeared in our yard. I have seen him several times in the area, and this morning I managed some slightly fuzzy pictures.

According to Journey North, there is one full or partial albino in 30,000 robins.


Madcap said...

Bootstrap seems to be out of commission right now. I tried to check the link but it gave me a message that it "could not be found". Same happened when I tried it from your links-list.

It seems to me I saw a robin like that a couple years ago. Odd. Think they're visiting from Russia?

Jim said...

Interesting, I'll be keeping my eyes open for something like that.

Deb said...

Wow! I'm glad you were able to get photos and share!

I've never seen an albino bird but in the neighborhood where I grew up every so often there would be an albino squirrel.

galeybird said...

Hi I live in Golden Colorado. I have a bird that looks just like this visiting my back yard. Is it a rare bird and is it really a robin? Gale

arcolaura said...

Well, not a rare bird, exactly - just an uncommon color pattern on a common bird. The Journey North article I linked mentions white feathers growing as a result of injury, or increasingly as the bird ages. If you do a Google search on "robin" "albinism" you'll probably find more information.