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Thread: White-chinned Petrels off Cape Town

  1. #1
    Storm-Petrel
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    Jul 2011
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    Canberra
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    White-chinned Petrels off Cape Town

    Hi All,

    Managed to fit in a Cape Town pelagic during my recent holiday in South Africa. The highlight for me was probably the single 'Atlantic' Yellow-nosed Albatross but the large numbers of White-chinned Petrels were also great. The variety in both distribution and extent of white patches on the head was even more pronounced than I had expected - or at least certain variations were commoner than I had realised. Very few showed the restricted white chins that we commonly see off Australia.

    Anyway, here are some images. Just for fun.

    Cheers Dan

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  2. #2
    Administrator
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    Sydney, NSW, Australia
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    Interesting photos Dan.

    You wouldn't happen to have a trip list, would you? I'd be very interested to see what else you saw.

    Cheers,
    Brook

  3. #3
    Should we re-lump White-chinned and Spectacled Petrels ;-)
    Surprised that there was only one Atlantic YNA. Were there Indian YNAs, too?
    Cheers,
    Nikolas

  4. #4
    Storm-Petrel
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Sydney, NSW, Australia
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    Great photos Dan and intersting question Nikolas. To me the photos suggest that there is a random albinism thing happening in the head plumage of western White-chinned Petrels. A wayward gene and a speciation event are not the same thing. This exact thing is common in rails like Buff-banded, Weka, LHI woodhen and Purple Swamphen (the so called white Gallinule of Lord Howe being an extreme example). I've never been convinced by Spectacled Petrel even as a subspecies, though I have not looked into it at all.

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