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Tech & Science New bird discovered in Sydney Botanic Garden

07:15  04 january  2018
07:15  04 january  2018 Source:

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Confusion surrounds the unknown identity of a new species of bird . Pied currawong with leucism discovered in Royal Botanic Garden in Sydney . At first, the Royal Botanic Garden had trouble identifying the bird , thinking it may have been "an albino crow".

Two parks and a botanic garden close to the centre of Sydney are rich in bird life. It has a yellow belly and its call sounds like a barking dog with a bad cough. New Holland Honeyeater 18 cm Often sitting boldly on the top of a branch.

Pied currawong with leucism discovered in Royal Botanic Garden in Sydney© Provided by Sydney Morning Herald Pied currawong with leucism discovered in Royal Botanic Garden in Sydney A unusual species of bird has been discovered in the Royal Botanic Garden in Sydney. Staff and members of the public were quick to point out the rare pied currawong due to it's pale "washed-out appearance".

Pied currawongs are found throughout eastern Australia and are often mistaken for a common magpie due to their jet black feathers and white undertail. Although the bird thrives in open woodlands, the species have adapted to live in urban areas.

At first, the Royal Botanic Garden had trouble identifying the bird, thinking it may have been "an albino crow". Wildlife expert Dr John Martin concluded that the pied currawong was suffering from leucism.

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Discover the amazing variety of native and exotic Birds , Mammals, Reptiles, Insects, Fish and Spiders who make their homes in the Garden . Meet the people who work at the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney and keep up with the latest news and stories.

Some of the plants are very rare like the recently discovered Wollemi Pine - the 'Dinosaur tree' - and the cycads. There are also many birds and bats in the park. In 1862 Sydney 's first zoo opened in the Botanic Gardens but it relocated to Moore Park in 1883.

Leucism is a rare genetic condition that reduces the skin pigments in animals, which causes the skin to appear white. However, Dr Martin said, leucism is different to albinism.

"The difference is that traces of colour are present [in cases of leucism]. This pied currawong has small patches of coloured feathers...a washed-out appearance instead of a complete lack of colour like an albino bird".

Since the discovery, the Royal Botanic Garden has encouraged members of the public to help in naming the bird through its  Facebook page. "Elsa, the Pied Currawong" one commenter said, referencing the protagonist from the popular disney movie Frozen.

The Royal Botanic Garden is now observing the bird, noting it has bred and is currently feeding two large and healthy chicks.

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