Albino and leucistic animals have little or no melanin pigment due to a genetic mutation. This leaves their skin, fur, or feathers a sparkling white.
While this mutation makes them pretty to look at, it’s usually bad for their survival rates in the wild. That’s because being all white is generally a disadvantage in the wild (unless you’re in a snowy environment). Check out these ultra-rare and beautifully white animals that you may never see again.
1. Humpback Whale
He may not be the most famous white whale ever (there’s a really famous book about one), but Migaloo is certainly the most well-loved white whale in the the world. The albino humpback can be seen off the coast of Australia during migration season.
Researchers and casual observers have kept tabs on this beautiful whale for over 25 years. The sight of Migaloo breaching is absolutely stunning, and he’s been attracting visitors ever since he was first spotted off the coast of Queensland in 1991.
Everyone knows how gorgeous the plumage of a regular peacock is, and white ones are no less stunning. The long length combined with the delicate wisps of their feathers makes for an impressive sight.
As stunning as this bird is, it is not a true albino. Rather it is leucistic, meaning that it has less pigment than a regular peacock (albinos have no pigment). As you can see, the birds eyes are not red, which would be the case if he were a true albino.
As with many other animals, albino alligators don’t last long in the wild because they have trouble blending in with their surroundings. This gator’s albinism saved him in a way.
The owners of an alligator farm snatched him up after they spotted him. They then agreed to send him and and another albino alligator (possible related to him) to the Lowry Zoo in Tampa, Florida. If you’re visiting these albino gators, make sure you go on the water flume ride that passes over their enclosure for a once-in-a-lifetime view of them.
Like most of the animals on this list, you’ll probably never glimpse an albino raccoon in the wild. That’s because the occurrence of them is extremely low, and the ones that do exist are more easily hunted by predators.
Luckily for this little girl, she’s someone’s pet. Her name is Sassy and you can follow her owner on Instagram. Or just check out #raccoonsofinstagram. Experts recommend against keeping raccoons as pets, but you can still enjoy the photos!
A farmer in Equatorial Guinea killed the normal-colored members of this gorilla’s family, but kept her as a curiosity. A primatologist bought the gorilla from the farmer and took her to the Barcelona Zoo.
He was beloved by the city and would take on many nicknames, though Snowflake was the most famous. Snowflake lived to be almost 40 years old under the watchful eyes of his caretakers. Though he had a sad beginning to his life, he went on to have a full life with children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
6. Screech Owl
Like the peacock above, this screech owl does not technically have albinism, but leucism. This genetic mutation leaves his feathers a dazzling white, but leaves his eyes the usual color.
A hiker found this bird, whose name is Luna, as a fledgling. Rescue workers could not locate his nest, so they took him to a wildlife center. Because leucistic birds have a difficult time finding mates and cannot camouflage themselves, they are often kept in sanctuaries when they are rescued.