Around New England

Rare White Crow Spotted In Northern Maine

October 11, 2021

A man spotted and photographed  a rare white crow on a power line in Aroostook County in Maine last week.

The lack of black on the crow’s body “is the result of a genetic mutation resulting in leucism” which “prevents melanin and other pigments from being deposited in the feathers,” according to The Bangor Daily News.

Leucism is an abnormal condition of reduced pigmentation.

A staff naturalist with Maine Audubon, Doug Hitchcox, told the newspaper that he has only gotten two reports of a white crow since 2014.

It’s not a great deal for the bird, because pigment makes the feathers stronger and white makes the bird an easier target for predators, the naturalist said.

“But I sure hope it lives a long, happy crow life,” the naturalist said.

 

This white crow was photographed by Maxine and Jim Harwood of Piedmont, Ohio in June 1998, according to the web site of The Cornell Lab of Ornithology (https://www.birds.cornell.edu/crows/whitecrows.htm).

 

 

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