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Sightings of a mysterious pink bird have puzzled locals in the North East this week.
The bird has been spotted by several passers-by attempting to blend in among pigeons, but its true breed has remained in doubt - spouting much speculation.
However, Nik Shelton of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), believes the pink plumage can be easily explained.
"The bird has clearly been dyed," he said.
"It is likely to be a captive dove and we have had reports of these being dyed strange colours and released at special events.
"This one has clearly not returned to its owner afterwards," Mr Shelton added.
Durham Police officers are the latest to spot a bright pink bird, which is making a name for itself in the skies of Darlington.
The force posted a picture on Twitter of the pigeon on a rooftop, apparently trying to blend in.
After examining the pictures Nik Shelton of the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) said: "The bird has clearly been dyed. "It is likely to be a captive dove and we have had reports of these being dyed strange colours and released at special events.
"This one has clearly not returned to its owner afterwards."
A bright pink pigeon has been spotted on the rooftops and in the skies, over Darlington in County Durham.
As the photograph above shows, its efforts to blend in with its grey cousins has proved futile.
And the sight has shocked and puzzled people who have seen it.
One dog-walker said: "I just couldn't believe my eyes. For a moment I had to look again, and again, just to make sure I wasn't hallucinating."
However, the RSPB believe it may not be a pigeon at all.
It is not a new species, but could in fact be a dove that has been dyed pink and then released during a special event.
But instead of returning to its owner it has broken free and made new friends in the pigeon world.
And for that, it is probably tickled pink.