Leucistic Blackbird

The blackbird (Turdus merula) is one of our best-known and easily recognised garden birds, so it’s interesting to see an unusual example that’s more of a “black-and-whitebird”…

black white bird

This male bird, photographed in a St.Ann’s garden by Nic Cairns, shows the phenomenon known as leucism, a genetic condition where cells are unable to synthesise the melanin pigment which causes normal colouration.  This individual is only partly leucistic, but all-white birds have been seen, and blackbirds with varying degrees of leucistic plumage have been recorded from gardens all over the country.

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