Wednesday, 10 April 2013

10/04: BALD BLACKBIRD?

Just a quickie as I've got the 'thumbs up' re. progress on Zinc (horse) so need to crack on with that today.

But ..... over the last couple of days we've seen this blackbird being chased by others in the garden - all the birds are being feisty and territorial just now.     Thought at first he had lots of white feathers on his head and body but David got these photos yesterday - they're a bit fuzzy but good enough to see that the white bits on the bird's head are actually bald spots.

A quick search on Google didn't help much.    Seems it might be caused by feather mites or might be stress related at mating season for blackbirds who haven't found a mate?

Anybody have answers?





They are normally such handsome birds that I feel very sorry for this poor chap.    Looking like that won't enhance his chances with the ladies will it?


5 comments:

Jo said...

Looks awful doesn't he? I bet it's the mites. Poor bird.

Mike Woodcock said...

Could possibly be the result of a particularly vicious fight with a rival male, but most likely to be a mite infestation.

Sue Clinker said...

I haven't seen him at all today so hope he is OK.
Appears to be fairly common judging by comments I've found on Google forums but opinions divided re. mites or hormones. It appears to be a temporary condition and new feathers should follow the moult ...

If it is due to mites I assume this could infect other blackbirds?

Jennifer Rose Phillip said...

poor guy :/ starting to look a little bit like a vulture

Sue Clinker said...

You're right Jennifer - he does look like a vulture :-)