Thursday, October 19, 2006

Coloured and albino peacocks

I need a few pictures for references to do some more drawings/paintings so I've decided to place them here. The guy birds have the brilliant colours and tails and the hens are rather plainer - hmmm just like the body decorations on the men and women in Papua New Guinea.

Anyway, there's apparently superstitions regarding these birds I guess because of the eyes in the tail feathers and the ability to change colours. The colour of a peacock feather is caused by its complex structure and changes with the angle of incident light.

The white colour of an albino peacock is due to the missing black melanine pigment. The usual rich colours of the peacock are seen because black pigment which absorbs most of the incident light, allowing us to see only the interference colours. In the albino peacock, the interference is still happening, but the effect is entirely washed out by the abundance of white light. The "eyes" of the tail feathers are clear, not coloured.
W. (with a bit of help from google search friends!)


Blogger The Moody Minstrel said...

Nature's palette never ceases to amaze me.

8:04 AM  
Blogger Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

Yes, the world is an amazing place, and there is much to be joyful about. It's a pity that we get bombarded with the bad news and we need constant reminding of the beauty of colour and patterns and the abundance of variety in birds and animals.

8:48 PM  
Blogger Penny said...

Sorry to hear your grand daughter has gone home, we miss them a lot, especially at that age.
I dont need to look for peacocks I have enough here thumping around on the roof as its mating time.

6:56 PM  
Blogger Peceli and Wendy's Blog said...

Thumping about on the roof? The mind boggles... Penny, you do have diversity at your place - foals nearly every day, peacocks mating and they do make a dickens of a row don't they?
They are like metro males prancing in front of the girls.

11:14 PM  
Blogger tooners said...

not sure that i've ever seen an albino peacock before... they are absolutely the most beautiful birds! love the pics!!

3:15 AM  

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