Photographer Yves Adams believes the rare king penguin he saw on an island in South Georgia is leucistic

By Kelli Bender
February 19, 2021 05:46 PM
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Credit: Yves Adams/Kennedy News

This king penguin ditched the classic black-and-white tuxedo for a different look.

According to The Independent, wildlife photographer Yves Adams spotted a yellow penguin on a 2019 trip to an island in South Georgia and has just released the photos.

The unique bird is believed to be the first yellow-and-white king penguin ever found. Adams' special sighting occurred in the midst of a two-month expedition led by the Belgian photographer.

In 2019, Adams traveled to the rare animal's island home to photograph a colony of 120,000 king penguins and quickly spotted the yellow bird's plumage.

"They all looked normal except for this one. It really was something else. It was an incredibly unique experience," the photographer told The Independent about his meeting with the yellow penguin.

Adams told the outlet that luck played a big role in his ability to get such stunning shots of the strange bird.

"We were so lucky the bird landed right where we were. Our view wasn't blocked by a sea of massive animals. Normally it's almost impossible to move on this beach because of them all," he said about spotting the yellow bird amongst its penguin peers.

Credit: Yves Adams/Kennedy News

The photographer believes the yellow penguin is leucistic and has a condition that affects its pigmentation, turning the bird's normally black feathers yellow.

While Adams photographed the bird in December 2019, it took him over a year to release the photos of the yellow penguin because of the demands of his expedition.

"I took thousands of photos during that time, especially as the time of year meant it never went dark in the Antarctic," he said.

After sorting through all of his shots, Adams shared the best photos from his expedition, including his pictures of the yellow penguin.