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Leucistic Great tailed Grackle (unexpected) | by MandyJo Photo
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Leucistic Great tailed Grackle (unexpected)

Found among other grackles in Falfurrias TX


Leucism, or leukism, is an abnormal plumage condition caused by a genetic mutation that prevents pigment, particularly melanin, from being properly deposited on a bird’s feathers. As a result, the birds do not have the normal, classic plumage colors listed in field guides, and instead the plumage have several color changes, including:

* White patches where the bird should not have any

* Paler overall plumage that looks faint, diluted or bleached

* Overall white plumage with little or no color discernable


The Great tailed Grackle forages on the ground, in shallow water or in shrubs; it will steal food from other birds. It is omnivorous, eating insects, minnows, frogs, eggs, berries, seeds, grain and even small birds. Grackles at outdoors eating areas often wait eagerly until someone drops some food. They will rush forward and try to grab it,often snatching food out of the beak of another bird. Grackles prefer to eat from the ground at birdfeeders, making scattered seed an excellent choice of food for them. In shopping centers,grackles can be regularly seen foraging for bugs,especially after a lawn trimming.


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Taken on October 16, 2010