Birds of a white feather flock together

Letters

We were surprised when an albino pheasant (Letters, 22 May) took up residence with our seven domestic chickens last year. They seemed to coexist happily for a few weeks, sharing the same food, although the pheasant roosted elsewhere. We’ve not seen it this year and don’t know what happened to it.
Stephen Ross
High Biggins, Cumbria

• Last year I saw an albino pheasant occasionally on walks through local countryside. The last time I saw it, it was among several other pheasants hanging in the back of a gamekeeper’s quad cycle after a shoot. How jolly unsporting, I thought!
Alex Allan
Gore End, Hampshire

• A magnificent pheasant used to visit us regularly. We named him Algernon, in tribute to his aristocratic air. Every time we said, “Good morning, Algernon”, he corrected us indignantly with “Urquhart, Urquhart”. So Urquhart he became.
Sue Atkins
Lewes, East Sussex

• When we moved to our house on a farm in the Scottish Borders, some 46 years ago, there were five or six albino pheasants, the pride of the owner. Woe betide anyone who shot one. Sadly they are no more.
Bill Cook
Kelso, Scottish Borders

• In the early 1940s I saw a white pheasant on my grandmother’s farm in Carisbrooke, Isle of Wight. It was seen for more than one season. Here in Dorset a white-tailed blackbird has inhabited our garden and that of our neighbours for the last two years.
Malcolm Rice
West Parley, Dorset

• My wife and I saw one out of our bedroom window last November. In our back garden we’ve a semi-albino blackbird too. Something in the water?
John Taylor
Kingston, Devon

• We’ve seen several white pheasants over the years in the hills overlooking the beautiful Ceiriog Valley in north Wales, where we are so lucky to live.
Ieuan Roberts
Glyn Ceiriog, Llangollen

• I had one in my garden when I lived in urban Wolverhampton.
Tony Bayliss
Sandon, Essex

• I saw one last week here in Rutland.
Dan Howison
Exton, Rutland

• I was more fortunate than David Clark as I was only 70 when an albino cock pheasant spent several days in my garden, then in south Shropshire, in the winter of 2004.
Jennifer Hewitt
Wendover, Buckinghamshire

• While living in the Suffolk village of Stutton in the mid-1980s, I saw a flock of pheasants passing through the fields immediately behind my flat. There was always one all-white bird in the flock. There was also one black-feathered pheasant.
Richard James
Highworth, Wiltshire

• I saw a pure white albino pheasant a few weeks ago while out cycling. It was pheasant-shaped and in the company of other normally coloured pheasants, so I am pretty sure it wasn’t a duck, but David Clark’s letter increased my certainty.
Mark Smith
Sandbach, Cheshire

• I saw such a bird at Hartland Moor national nature reserve, Dorset. Four years ago for the first, and so far, the last time. The sighting still haunts.
Charlie Rugeroni
Wareham, Dorset

• We see one regularly that lives in Tithe Barn Woods, Capenwray, near Milnthorpe. Technically this is Lancashire but it is close to Cumbria.
Prof Mary Hamilton
Arnside, Cumbria

• I also saw a white pheasant, for the first time, in Northumberland last week. Maybe this beautiful county is becoming a hotspot for them.
Tim Watson
Newcastle upon Tyne

• I spotted an albino pheasant here in Dorset a few weeks ago. A very beautiful creature with bright red cheek patches.
Christopher Sharp
Henley, Dorset

• Some year ago my wife and I saw an albino pheasant in the valley leading to Penant Melangell, near Llangynog. According to report there is always such a bird in the valley and it is considered very bad form to shoot it.
Ian Randall
Fakenham, Norfolk

• A rather weedy albino pheasant lived in the woods near us at New Barns in Arnside, a few years ago, and occasionally wandered into our garden. It survived for about three years as local shooters were told to spare it, but I heard that it did end up eventually stuffed, and on somebody’s mantlepiece.
David Humphreys
Arnside, Cumbria

• Where I was brought up in North Yorkshire, in the 1950s, we used to regularly see a male albino pheasant in one particular area just north of Helmsley. We traced his lineage for several generations through the partially white plumage of his descendants.
Tony Law
Whissendine, Rutland

• Albino pheasants have been sighted in The Cotswolds. A few years ago I spotted one near Chedworth Roman Villa and another one about 10 miles north of the Villa. It could be that they have moved north to be nearer the snow line for camouflage purposes.
Michael Grace
Cirencester, Gloucestershire

• There is a white pheasant knocking around North Staffordshire too; but no sign of a senior government adviser admiring our bluebells, or testing his eyesight driving around country lanes.
Bill Dixon
Betley, Staffordshire

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