Life in Newburgh on Ythan

By Talpa

A funny looking sparrow

The garden is full of newly fledged house sparrows and their parents. One of them, the bird to the left, has a striking plumage abnormality, with pale wing extremities.

It could be a form of leucism known as dilution where plumage colour often appears ‘washed out’. In dilution, melanin cells are present (unlike in truly leucistic birds) but produce less pigment than normal. I wonder how it will get on in life. Such is the stuff of natural selection and evolution.

I know that the photograph is pretty ropey but it was taken through the less than clean kitchen window. I must remember to get the butler to have a firm word with the kitchen maid!

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