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Keulemans rare albino Kaka-Korako. Nestor Meridionalis lithograph c1875.

Keulemans rare albino Kaka-Korako. Nestor Meridionalis lithograph c1875.

by Keulemans, John Gerrard

Antique print of New Zealand Kaka, Nestor Meridionalis.. One of many varieties, this one illustrating "albunism. The feet and legs, which are usually black, are here white."

Original hand-coloured lithograph by eminent bird illustrator and naturalist John Gerrard Keulemans (1842-1912) for Ornithological Miscellany by George Dawson Rowley (1822-1878), and published in London between 1875 and 1878.

Keulemans' artistic and scientifically correct drawings are evident in his hand-coloured lithographs. In 1869 fellow ornithologist and colleague of John Gould, Richard Bowdler-Sharp persuaded the well-travelled Dutchman JG Keulemans to move from Brussels to London, the most important centre for publications illustrating birds.

In his Ornithological Miscellany Rowley observed that feather colour is affected by the regions in which birds live, and that ‘melanism’ is chiefly noticeable in the southern hemisphere, and particularly in Madagascar, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea. One of the best known examples is the swan which has white plumage in the northern hemisphere and becomes 'pure raven hue' in Australia: and in the Southern Indo-Pacific region, those birds which elsewhere present the most brilliant colours are either there darkened to black or fade away to white. I did not know that bird colour is brighter in birds that have just landed in the south of England from sunnier climates, than it is in birds that spent their winter in England. A bit like people..

Size of plate, as published, is 33 x 25cm (13 x 10inches)

Stock Number: apJGKkakaPrice: $350.00