Friday, 27 April 2012

Partial Leucistic Nuthatch

I have previously posted on this blog about abnormal plumage in birds, in particular leucism, and posted pictures of a few species with varying plumage patterns. Well this previous article prompted Nick and Teela Spratts to send me these pictures of a partially leucistic Eurasian Nuthatch that has been visiting their Oakhampton, Devon garden.

Leucistic Nuthatch - N & T Spratts

At first glance this bird looks very reminiscent of the subspecies Sitta europaea asiatica or  S.e. europaea that occur in Eastern Russia/Siberia or Fenno-Scandia/Western Russia, respectively. But the pictures show that this bird lacks the rust coloured vent and slate grey mantle of those subspecies.

Leucistic Nuthatch - N & T Spratts

Comparing this bird with a typically plumaged S. e. caesia (the British and Continental European race) which I have previously ringed shows the extent of the aberration in the plumage. The slate grey mantle and warm peach coloured underparts are lacking, although it is still possible to see patches of rust showing through on the vent, which may indicate that this bird is a male.

Normally Plumaged Nuthatch

Thanks to Nick and Teela for sending these pictures and allowing me to post them, it is an interesting looking bird but I think I prefer the normal plumaged one!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...