Trivia

Hard

The Opposite Of Albinism Is Called?

Melanism
Velvetinism
Vitiligo
Alopecia X

Answer: Melanism

The most readily identifiable pigmentation disorder in both humans and animals is albinism. Nothing stands out in nature more than a creature best known for a dark and relatively camouflaged body, like a crocodile or deer, stark white against the greens and browns of their habitat.

While albinism is a genetic variation characterized by a complete or partial lack of pigmentation, melanism is a genetic variation found in animals characterized by hyperpigmentation. In the photo here, as an example, you can see two European adders, Vipera berus, side by side. The two snakes are from the exact same species but one, with melanism, is jet black.

Not all melanism is a one-off genetic quirk, like a random black snake in a brood. It can also be adaptive. The most widely taught example of adaptive evolution—the changes in the peppered moth in the United Kingdom during the industrial revolution—is an example of adaptive melanism. As soot from the increasing number of factories darkened everything in London from building exteriors to tree bark, the peppered moth slowly became “sooty” itself, as its offspring with darker and more peppered wings blended in better to the dirty environment. This type of adaptive evolution in response to pollution is common enough that it even has a name: “industrial melanism”.

Another well known example of melanism is that of black panthers and jaguars. Long thought to be distinct feline species, modern genetic testing has revealed that the black jaguars of the Americas are actually regular jaguars, Panthera onca, with melanism. The same for black panthers in Asia and Africa, which are leopards, Panthera pardus, with melanism.

Trivia

Hard

A Lipogram Is A Book In Which What Is Omitted?

Trivia

Hard

Which Day Of The Week Is The Rainiest?

Trivia

Hard

The Largest Library Of Inks In The World Belongs To?

Trivia

Hard

Which TV Show Theme Song Changed Every Episode?

Trivia

Very Hard

Which Of These Early Computers Had A Critical Defect That Erased Removable Media?

Trivia

Easy

The Largest Consumer Of Fireworks In The United States Is?

Trivia

Hard

In The 1990s, There Was A Run On Sony Camcorders When Consumers Believed They Could?

Trivia

Hard

Which Film’s Title Is An Anagram Of The Book It Was Based On?

Trivia

Hard

Simpsons’s Character Milhouse First Appeared Not In A Simpsons Episode But In?

Trivia

Hard

The Rotating Displays Used On Dozens Of Game Shows Throughout The 20th Century Are Called?