is This Masked Robin?
Laura Erickson, Ornithologist
Photo Doug Wilson
The robin in the photo is a partial albino. What do you think caused its
strangely fascinating pattern?
Laura Erickson thinks the robin in this photo might have grown these
white feathers after bonking into a window. She notices that the
concentrated near the base of the bird’s beak, where it would have
suffered the most trauma in window strikes. Also, this bird is a very
healthy looking adult male, exactly the kind who is most easily enticed
to attack its reflection in a mirror.
Laura thinks it is less likely that the bird was born this way because
usually white patches in genetic partial albinos cover bigger areas
Laura thinks this robin probably isn’t very old; other old robins
she’s seen were a little more faded, with more streaky white feathers
on the face than solid patches like this bird has.