Our time in the Florida Keys was over. We were heading home after Arthur’s turtle conference in early December, taking US1 across the Keys back to the mainland. We were speeding along Lower Matecumbe Key when I spotted a white mass perched on a telephone poll.
We turned around for a better look. It was a nearly all-white Turkey Vulture!
Oh my goodness, how unusual and beautiful! I was oohing and aahing. 🙂
Quite a few feathers look to have some brown on them, so this bird is not an albino. A Turkey Vulture with normal plumage would have a red head just like this bird does.
This beauty was not my first leucistic bird, but it was my first leucistic vulture, and my first leucistic bird in Florida. 🙂
I saw my first leucistic American Robin on Sunday afternoon on the way to Middlefork Savanna in Lake Forest. I had just parked the car at Elawa Farm and saw the bird before I even got out of the car. I laughed because I had already seen a photo of this same bird, the day before, posted on a friend’s Facebook page. I’ve posted these on Flickr so you can click through to see them bigger.
Bird Photography Weekly is a regular collection of user-submitted bird photos from all over the world. The new edition comes out every Sunday. Go have a look at this week’s submissions!
Last Sunday we rented a canoe for some paddling at Chain O’ Lakes State Park. It was a beautiful morning and an easy paddle.
One of the highlights was seeing large groups of swallows hunting for bugs over the still water and congregating on snags along the shore.
Among them was a very light bird, a possible leucistic Tree Swallow. Leucism (sometimes incorrectly called partial-albinism) is a condition characterized by reduced pigmentation. I’ve never seen a leucistic swallow before, but they’re definitely out there.
Have you ever seen a leucistic bird?
* The original title I wanted to use for this post is apparently the name of a porn movie. That’s some traffic I don’t need on this blog. Hirundididae is the Latin name for the Swallow family of birds. 😉
A juvenile Whooping Crane and an albino Sandhill Crane were recently spotted near the Platte River southwest of Grand Island.
Read the entire article here.
I had a look on Flickr for photos of either of these birds. I came up empty but did find this nice picture of a leucistic Sandhill Crane taken in Indiana last year: Partial Albino (leucistic) Sandhill Crane