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 Post subject: Leucistic Birds
Unread postPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 11:09 am 
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Hi All,

We visited Grootvadersbos a few weekends ago - and had a good time birding. We had marginal success - but we were thrilled to get an excellent look at a pair of Narina Trogons.

At the campsite I caught a glimpse of what I first thought was someones pet Cockatoo. But on closer inspection it was hanging around with a mousebird. The two were not overly shy and I got an excellent look later - it was clearly a "white" / entirely Pale version of a mousbird. I'm guessing this is some kind of pale morph / albino / genetic defect.

Is this common in mousebirds - or any other birds for that matter?

Lee


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 Post subject: Re: Pale / Albino Mousebird - Grootvadersbos
Unread postPosted: Tue Dec 01, 2009 1:41 pm 
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Pale versions of NO darker bird are common. You have had a great sighting. Any pics?

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 Post subject: Re: Pale / Albino Mousebird - Grootvadersbos
Unread postPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2009 2:38 pm 
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Oh dear - no photo's I'm afraid. I'd hope some other birders would see it this summer. It was a rather conspicuous and gregarious visitor in the Grootvadersbos campsite - and appeared quite settled. We looked at it for some time on both mornings that we were there. Given the neck-straining, eye-squinting birdwatching in the nearby forest, perhaps the obviousness of this little fella lulled us into the feeling that this was all rather common place.

Funny how lessons are learned.


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 Post subject: Re: Pale / Albino Mousebird - Grootvadersbos
Unread postPosted: Wed Dec 02, 2009 4:02 pm 
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A white form of any species is usually referred to as Leucism, which is a phenomenon whereby a body is unable or only partially able to provide skin or feather pigmentation (pigment cells fail to develop, either partially or over the entire body). This is different to Albinism, where a complete lack of melanin pigment occurs, so the eyes, skin and hair/feathers are affected. You will notice with Leucism that the bird will still have the normal bill, eye and leg colour.

Leucistic birds are not uncommon, even though it isn't everyday that you get to see them.

Leucism can be partial or complete, so you may see birds with varying degrees of white blotching, to completely white.


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 Post subject: Re: Pale / Albino Mousebird - Grootvadersbos
Unread postPosted: Fri Dec 04, 2009 1:38 pm 
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Thanks Moegaai,

I am now thoroughly briefed. Leucism will be my new word of the week.


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 Post subject: Re: Birding: WCNP
Unread postPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2010 9:42 pm 
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Hi. I happen to be in the Geelbek hide on 22 November 2009 when the Cape Bird CLub was doing a sensus (i think). This bird was pointed out as being out of the ordinary. I took a few photos and the guys at the Cape Bird Club id'd it as a Curlew Sandpiper but one that is leucistic. This means that it is partly
lacking melanin pigments. I further understand that these beauties are a common Siberian species, so a long commute to Langebaan :clap:
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 Post subject: Re: Leucistic Birds
Unread postPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 6:16 pm 
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Had this leucistic Cape Turtle-Dove in my garden in December 2009, left for KNP and when I got home he was gone. :( :D

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 Post subject: Re: Leucistic Birds
Unread postPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2010 12:56 am 
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Legendary Virtual Ranger
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like this one, seems to be a sparrow... but the beak is not dark :|
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 Post subject: Re: Leucistic Birds
Unread postPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 1:11 pm 
A Leucistic Guineafowl at our house in Marloth Park

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 Post subject: Re: Leucistic Birds
Unread postPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 4:37 pm 
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Let's see how long I get away with this one, but I can't resist. It's such a perfect example. lol

Taken in Europe, the Common Blackbird (Turdus merula)

A normal one looks like this :

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A Leucistic one like this :

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 Post subject: Re: Leucistic Birds
Unread postPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 11:18 am 
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It is a fine example of a leucistic bird GP, so what's the problem? :thumbs_up:

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 Post subject: Re: Leucistic Birds
Unread postPosted: Thu May 19, 2011 2:06 pm 
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It's a European Bird so I was taking a bit of a chance that it may not be allowed. :lol: Seems okay though!


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 Post subject: Re: Leucistic Birds
Unread postPosted: Fri May 20, 2011 7:02 am 
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I've seen a partially leucistic southern masked weaver in our garden this past breeding season. It had the black mask and was black everywhere it was supposed to be black, but was pure white where the yellow feathers were supposed to be. No pics unfortunately.


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 Post subject: Re: Leucistic Birds
Unread postPosted: Sun May 29, 2011 11:18 am 
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Seen this leucistic greater blue-eared starling at the Skukuza day-visitors centre on 28 May 2011.

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 Post subject: Re: Leucistic Birds
Unread postPosted: Sun Jul 03, 2011 8:17 pm 
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Here is a leucistic Guinea Fowl whose progress I have been following for some six months. I see the bird regularly. It is part of a huge flock on a mixed farm that has extensive wheatlands. The flock tends to stick to the lower riveland area of the farm. There are PLENTY of raptors around but none so far seem to have got this one, despite it being so badly camouflaged.

Pete

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