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Goose - Svalbard (1 Viewer)

t_omek

Well-known member
Found this goose with barnacle geese near Longyearbyen, few days ago. What it will be, feral or albinistic?
 

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stevethehydra

Well-known member
Wow! Looks like a "pure" Barnacle structurally (not a Snow or Ross's or domestic goose hybrid), but I've never seen such a completely white leucistic type in a Branta before - usually they have some pale "shadow" of typical markings. This bird ought to be more documented, maybe someone should try to get a feather for DNA...
 

keith

Well-known member
See if it turns up at Caelaverock next winter, I photographed a mostly white barnacle at Longyearbyen 2 years ago and it turned up in winter, easily identified by the markings.
 

fugl

Well-known member
I agree, but I find the nomenclature confusing, with disagreements between references; and this is not only a problem in English.

Among English-speaking birders the distinction’s increasingly observed (it should be after being beaten into our heads all these years!) at least as far as postings to BF are concerned. It’s among beginning and non-birder posters that the confusion mostly resides. The man-in-the-street, of course, is unlikely to have even heard the term “leucism” while everyone knows “albino”.
 
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Valéry Schollaert

Respect animals, don't eat or wear their body or s
Among English-speaking birders the distinction’s increasingly observed (it should be after being beaten into our heads all these years!) at least as far as postings to BF are concerned. It’s among beginning and non-birder posters that the confusion mostly resides. The man-in-the-street, of course, is unlikely to have even heard the term “leucism” while everyone knows “albino”.

I usually use the definition as here.

As said there, "A common misnomer is ‘partial albino’ – this is not possible since albinism affects the whole plumage of a bird, not just part."


Still, you find some birding publications with "partial albino" used as here.

This is the confusion I'm talking about.
 

fugl

Well-known member
I usually use the definition as here.

As said there, "A common misnomer is ‘partial albino’ – this is not possible since albinism affects the whole plumage of a bird, not just part."

Still, you find some birding publications with "partial albino" used as here.

It’s only “impossible” because we choose to think of it that way. We could just as easily define “partial albinism” as “complete albinism” minus some key feature (e.g., red eyes or whatever). As always in questions of language, usage is everything, "logic" nothing.
 
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Andy Adcock

Well-known member
England
I usually use the definition as here.

As said there, "A common misnomer is ‘partial albino’ – this is not possible since albinism affects the whole plumage of a bird, not just part."


Still, you find some birding publications with "partial albino" used as here.

This is the confusion I'm talking about.

Could be down to one of two things IMHO, in some cases where a book has been written by a keen amateur with no real biological training or, a writer may think that in using words that seem less scientific, a book may appeal to a broader range of people, either is as likely as the other I think.

Whatever the reason, the two are mutually exclusive, as fugl says, it's been discussed here numerous times and I don't think it's that hard a principle to grasp?

It's also correct that the terms 'albino' or 'partial albino' are most often used by non birders or those with less experience. It's a sign of the times, there's never been a better informed generation of birder / amateur naturalist as this.

I suppose, taken in isolation, logically, each white feather is albino so it would naturally follow that 'partial albino' in terms of the whole, could be correct?


A
 
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Valéry Schollaert

Respect animals, don't eat or wear their body or s
It’s only “impossible” because we choose to think of it that way. We could just as easily define “partial albinism” as “complete albinism” minus some key feature (e.g., red eyes or whatever). As always in questions of language, usage is everything, "logic" nothing.

I don't disagree, I'm just pointing than usage is not consistent nowadays, so I didn't give my opinion, it preferred to write the two ways to label such an all white individual.

This point is: if, genetically, an individual is unable to produce pigment, it is automatically all white; if it is partial, it means it can produce pigment, although it might have issues in quantity and distribution. In SOME definitions, albino is, indeed, an individual unable to produce pigment...
 

Valéry Schollaert

Respect animals, don't eat or wear their body or s
Could be down to one of two things IMHO, in some cases where a book has been written by a keen amateur with no real biological training or, a writer may think that in using words that seem less scientific, a book may appeal to a broader range of people, either is as likely as the other I think.

Whatever the reason, the two are mutually exclusive, as fugl says, it's been discussed here numerous times and I don't think it's that hard a principle to grasp?

It's also correct that the terms 'albino' or 'partial albino' are most often used by non birders or those with less experience. It's a sign of the times, there's never been a better informed generation of birder / amateur naturalist as this.

I suppose, taken in isolation, logically, each white feather is albino so it would naturally follow that 'partial albino' in terms of the whole, could be correct?


A

I hoped writing this way would avoid to discuss it again... it seems it didn't succeed :king:
 

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