A rare albino crow has been found nesting in an Aldergrove backyard. (Nada Kumar/Special to The Star)

Rare albino crow found in Aldergrove backyard

A genetic mutation resulting in a complete lack of colour makes this bird extremely uncommon

Aldergrove resident Lizzy Grimes was urged by her landlord, Nanda Kumar, to her share a rare avian discovery she made on Tuesday morning in her backyard – a white crow.

“I’ve never seen one before, I was in my glory,” Grimes said.

With distinct white feathers and pink feet, bill, and eyes, albino crows are not common as parents with the same recessive gene are needed to produce them.

Albinism is a genetic mutation that prevents the production of melanin in the body, which results in a complete lack of colour.

The bright white bird is rarely seen, with only a handful of accounts in B.C. throughout the past decade.

Kumar said it’s a one in 10,000 occurrence.

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“All I know about white crows is they’re rare and sometimes they get abandoned, but this time is different, none of the black ones will let anyone near it except for me,” Grimes explained, noting the bird had stuck around all day.

White crows don’t usually survive the first year as they are too predator prone.

Kumar feared that predators may make an easy meal out of the crow and made some phone calls to see what could be done.

“As the baby crow needed to be rescued and saved, so I put it in a box and handed it over to the Wildlife Recuse Association in Burnaby,” Kumar explained.

He said the association seemed positive about the crow’s future.

Kumar added that Grimes had claimed to have seen a second one on Tuesday, but that it had flown off and could still be nesting somewhere around Aldergrove.


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