Melanistic animals (all black)
Melanistic, “melanic,” or “black morph” specimens are caused by the presence or presence of a dark pigment in their skin. It is a condition in which the skin or appendages develop excessive dark pigment, contrary to albinism.
Melanism derives from a Greek word meaning black pigment.
Pseudo-melannism, also known as abundism, is a pigmentation pattern characterized by dark pigment spots, especially on the hindquarters that make the animal appear melanistic.
Melanism that is due to the process of adaptation is referred to as adaptive melanin. Dark creatures are better able to survive and reproduce as they can camouflage themselves. Predators are less likely to notice some species, while others, such as black panthers, utilize it as a foraging advantage at night when hunting.
Melanism is usually inherited: A dominant gene expressed exclusively or nearly entirely in the phenotype causes excessive melanin production. Animals with adaptive melanin include squirrels, cats and dogs, coral snakes, and various felines and canids.
Melanism is an example of this constant change in nature of which nothing is more striking than a pitch-black animal, which is the product of a rare genetic mutation even rarer than albinism.
Listed below is a fascinating gallery of melanistic animals.
Melanistic, “melanic,” or “black morph” specimens are caused by the presence or presence of a dark pigment in their skin.
Melanistic Big Cats aka Black Panthers
Generally, black panthers are melanistic-colored subspecies of a large cat. Latin American black panthers are black jaguars (Panthera onca), black leopards (Panthera pardus) in Asia and Africa, and black cougars (Puma concolor – although no black variant has been confirmed) in North America.
Melanistic (all black) Ratsnake
Melanistic (Black) Fawn
Melanistic (Black) Wolf
Melanistic (Black) King Penguin
Melanistic (Black) Zebra
Melanistic (Black) Red Fox
Melanistic (Black) Eastern Blue Tongue Lizards
Melanistic (Black) Seal
Melanistic Eastern Grey Squirrel (Black Squirrel)
Melanistic Ayam Cemani rooster