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Thanks 4thebird and everyone else!

I am going to email that friend with the information and find out what she thinks. Even though all of us assembled on that evening know much about animals (and particularly birds), we were wondering about the mysterious for at last half an hour. I didn't know anything about albatrosses and that wiki article link was quite a mouthful. So many species, categories, etc.

From what little I can tell and on her descriptions, it looks like one of the "great albatrosses." Possibly one of the "Wandering Albatross" subtypes. The bird they found was apparently all white, but none of the descriptions I've skimmed thus far have a truly all white albatross unless it is a male, or under a certain age.

Do any of you have any idea how and why this probable albatross would have shown up in the extremely urban environment of NYC in the late 1980s? My own guesses were these:

#1. Some exotic animal collector had brought the albatross to the tristate area illegally and it had gotten loose (or less likely, the bird was being legally transported and somehow got loose, but was not reported to any of the local animal welfare agencies).

#2. Least likely and requires a convoluted mess of events: this albatross may have been in some sort of zoo or aviary from the southeastern U.S. and during one of the major eastern seaboard tropiocal storms, hurricanes, etc., was injured, disoriented, or other and somehow made it up the east coast.

We tried to ask her a lot of specifics about when and how (year, month, seasons, etc.), but her memory was scarce on many of the surrounding issues other than the bird itself.

Curiosity almost satisfied,
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