As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Thursday, 19 October 2017

Rare 'ghost owl' with white feathers spotted in Britain

By Jasper Hamill, The Sun
(Credit: Caters News Agency)
(Credit: Caters News Agency)

An incredibly rare ghostly white "Ino" owl has been spotted in the UK.

The beautiful pure white owl was photographed at a secret location, on private land just outside of Durham City Center.

It is a British species called a Little Owl which has been turned white due to a rare genetic condition known as Ino, which makes it look a bit like an albino.

Photographer Hilary Chambers, a member of the Durham Bird Club, took the extraordinary pictures but was asked to keep the location a secret in a bid to protect the rare bird.
The 68-year-old originally thought it was an Albino owl or a Leucistic owl but presented her incredible shots to Hein van Grouw, bird curator at The National History Museum, who later confirmed it was actually an Ino bird.

"You learn something every day," Chambers said.

"I am a keen birdwatcher and photographer and have been doing this for about 15 years now.

"I have had some great encounters over the years and you just never know what you are going to see next."

Albinism is a congenital disorder characterised by the complete or partial absence of pigment in the feathers and Leucism is a condition in which there is partial loss of pigmentation in an animal resulting in white, pale, or patchy coloration of the feathers but not the eyes.

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