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Five atypical views of American Robin

Leucistic American Robin.
Leucistic American Robin in Glenview, Illinois, by spiecks.

In “ID Tips” in the December 2016 issue, Kenn Kaufman describes Rufous-backed Robin and Clay-colored Thrush — two of the 10 vagrant relatives of American Robin that have been recorded in the United States or Canada.

To recognize them, Kenn writes, you should never assume that every bird will be the expected species. Instead, you should expect to see variations. “If you study American Robins,” he writes, “you’ll see a major amount of variation among individuals in their colors and markings.”

You may even see robins that look like the birds shown here. They’re partial albino, or leucistic. One has a white head. Another is all white, or nearly so. The hungry speckled American Robin above doesn’t show the robin’s typically red breast. It was photographed by spiecks in Glenview, Illinois.

Originally Published

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