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Leucism in an Anhinga?


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Hello,

 

Yesterday I saw this Anhinga in central Florida, but it looked extremely pale for an anhinga. Will any expert weigh in on whether this is partial leucism or just a weird juvenile plumage that I don't see often. Thanks!

DSCN7249.thumb.JPG.e9de9876e8c8f89f29fc89b73b11e3d0.JPG

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I think it is just a young bird.

45 minutes ago, Mush said:

partial leucism

Leucism is where parts of the feathers are totally white. I think the phrase you were looking for would be "dilute plumage". 

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After some digging, I found this online:

 

https://www.beautyofbirds.com/anhingas.html

 

"

At the end of the first year, their plumage rapidly turns tatty brown (referred to as "brown phase."

Their full adult plumage grows in after a comprehensive prenuptial molt when they are about two years old and before their first breeding season (after their second or third winter)."

 

Thus, this must be a "brown phase" anhinga. However, I could not find many references to this term, but it does make sense.

 

Also water turkey.... I am guessing because they spread their wings like a turkey spreads its fail feathers? I don't understand the nickname haha.

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6 hours ago, Mush said:

Also water turkey.... I am guessing because they spread their wings like a turkey spreads its fail feathers? I don't understand the nickname haha.

Close.  It's from the way they spread their tail feathers when they're swimming, esp. when they're chasing food.  The spread feathers look a lot like a tom turkey's display.

https://macaulaylibrary.org/asset/81847691

'Snake bird' is from when the bird is swimming while water-logged.  Its soggy body is below water level, leaving only the long neck and head sticking up. 

https://macaulaylibrary.org/asset/35981861

Both are old Southern common names.

 

Edited by Charlie Spencer
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