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Why, How?

Why, How?
Photo Information
Copyright: Gary Fudge (garyfudge) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 181 W: 5 N: 320] (1098)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-03-01
Categories: Birds
Camera: Nikon D80, Nikkor 80-400mm
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2007-03-01 15:33
Viewed: 3235
Points: 2
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
We feed a large number of garden birds, and we were astonished to see this one today. We believe she is a female chaffinch who's colouring is mutated somehow. Sorry this is not the best shot - just a grab shot from an upstairs window by wife Corinne who's not familiar with the D80, though there are about 10 from slightly different angles, so this is an information request rather than a photo critique shot! The bird is with a large group of mainly male chaffinches, and is clearly well integrated with the group. Where the females here have almost lime green markings just above their tails, (s)he is yellow, and the main part of the body is a creamy white. We have never seen any others anywhere in the UK like this. Does anyone have any information???

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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
Why, How?garyfudge 1 03-02 19:50
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Critiques [Translate]

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  • Argus Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5038 W: 260 N: 15594] (50626)
  • [2007-03-01 15:49]

Hello Gary,
Though this shot is rather soft it is well composed and does show the phenomenon you mention in your note.
This female chaffinch is partially albinistic. A full albino, i.e., a bird with complete albinism is rare in adult birds because the striking white plumage is disadvantageous in the bird's normal habitat environment.
But partial albinism like that shown by this female chaffinch is probably much less of a disadvantatge and the bird is likely to reproduce and survive. Blackbirds are especially known to show partial albinism to various degrees.
Regards, Ivan

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