UNIQUE: The pale bird has attracted the attention of local bird watchers and those from afar. Photo: Dr Greg Clancy
UNIQUE: The pale bird has attracted the attention of local bird watchers and those from afar. Photo: Dr Greg Clancy

Pale duck brings in the birdwatchers

A VERY pale Plumed Whistling-Duck, which has been at a Waterview Heights dam for about a fortnight, has attracted the attention of local birdwatchers (birdos).

The duck was first observed by local resident Brian Scrivener on his dam, along with 300 or so normally coloured Plumed Whistling-Ducks.

Brian advised Gina Hart of the National Parks and Wildlife Service who passed on the information, and photos, to local ecologist Dr Greg Clancy.

Dr Clancy visited the site on Monday evening with two visitors from Virginia, USA, who were on a wildlife tour with him.

Three other local birdos visited after that and on Sunday Greg again visited to obtain photographs, with his wife Val, Joan O'Shea and Warren and Thompson.

Brian is expecting other birdos to call in to see his special duck.

"The duck was originally thought to be an albino but it has yellow eyes and slight pigmentation of some feathers making it a leucistic bird," Dr Clancy said.

"Leucism is a genetic mutation where most of the melanin in the feathers of a bird is lacking but the bare parts such as eyes, bill and legs are normally coloured."



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