BBC: Leucistic puffin

Thursday 1st July 2021
image captionThe bird’s lack of pigmentation is caused by a genetic condition called leucism

A rare white puffin has been spotted on a small island off the Sutherland coast in the Highlands.

The Scottish Wildlife Trust (SWT) said the bird was first seen on Handa Island in mid-June by seabird fieldworker Dora Hamilton.

The young puffin has only a few black feathers and its bill is largely orange.

SWT said the bird’s lack of pigmentation was caused by a genetic condition called leucism.

The trust manages the island as a wildlife reserve

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Jonathan Downes
Cryptozoologist, naturalist, musician, singer, composer, poet, novelist and Director of the Centre for Fortean Zoology since 1992. Jon was born in Portsmouth in 1959 and spent his infancy in Nigeria and his childhood in Hong Kong. His wife Corinna died of cancer in 2020, leaving him with two stepdaughters and a six year old granddaughter called Evelyn.