From: Linda Iroff
Date: 2001-04-25 23:28:00 UTC
Subject: Persistent albinism
Bob Church writes:
> albinism is simply not a trait of a non-domesticated (wild) population.
I'd like a clarification on what "persistent" means. Does it mean that
albino members of the species are more likely to arise from spontaneous
mutations than from inheriting the trait?
The reason I ask is that there seems to be persistent albinism in the
squirrel population of Oberlin OH. I have personally seen at least 3 albino
squirrels over a a time period of 11 years. I'm pretty sure they are
separate individuals because they were seen over different time periods in
different locations. I saw a fourth, stuffed and mounted, at a taxidermist.
It was taken from Oberlin in the late 80's.
Others who have lived in Oberlin for longer periods of time report that
albino squirrels are occasionally seen. To me, this is a persistent strain
of albinism, but I may be defining "persistent" wrong.