Albinism / leucism

To: <>
Subject: Albinism / leucism
Date: Wed, 25 Oct 2006 22:26:17 +0100
Hi all,
for those of you interested in odd looking leucistic birds, check out this 
Woodchat Shrike from Bulgaria.

Note also that they refer to it incorrectly as 'partial albino', a common 
mistake. The correct term is, I believe, partially leucistic, albinism relates 
to the complete absence of pigmentation in either feathers or bare parts 
including eyes, all of which would be pink. I'm sure you've all seen those 
silly white Rabbits and Mice with pink eyes and I've even seen Pythons and 
tropical fish but all have probably come about by design through captive 

True albinism is extremely rare in the wild due in no part to the animal or 
bird involved being blindingly obvious to predators as well as suffering from 
acute sensitivity to light (photophobia) and in some species, (particularly 
dogs) deafness. I saw an albino man when I was in Africa and he could barely 
open his eyes in daylight due to the sensitivity brought on by his condition.

All the best, Andy Adcock, UK

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