18/04/2024

A Rare Pink Baby Elephant Was Spotted At A Wildlife Park In South Africa

 

Pink elephants might seem like something from fairy tales or cartoons. But this was exactly what was seen by several photographers in a South African game reserve.

When Nicki Coertze, a professional wildlife photographer, visited the Kruger National Park in South Africa, he spotted a rare pink elephant calf standing out from the herd of African gray elephants. The rare elephant was spotted near the Shingwedsi River with other elephants in the herd. The river is commonly used by the elephants for drinking and bathing.

The sweetest pink baby elephant was found, has a pale pink skin that contrasts directly with the mother’s classic gray skin. It is believed the unique calf is around two or three weeks old at the time of filming and is definitely the smallest in the herd. It’s still unclear from the clip if the calf is a true ᴀʟʙɪɴᴏ or if the pink/white coloring is caused by a genetic condition called ʟᴇᴜᴄɪsᴍ.

Aʟʙɪɴɪsᴍ is a condition where there is an absence of melanin in the skin, resulting in the ʟᴏss of colour of skin, hair and feathers. Animals with Aʟʙɪɴɪsᴍ usually have pink or red eyes. ʟᴇᴜᴄɪsᴍ on the other hand, only refers to a partial ʟᴏss of pigmentation, and is a genetic condition that can only be found in animals. ʟᴇᴜᴄɪsᴛɪᴄ animals have overall pale-coloured fur, skin or feathers or have patches of pale colour, and have normal-coloured eyes.

Whether ᴀʟʙɪɴᴏ or ʟᴇᴜᴄɪsᴛɪᴄ, this tiny elephant has a tough road ahead of it. Animals carrying these conditions stick out of their natural habitat making them more susceptible to ᴀᴛᴛᴀᴄᴋ from ᴘʀᴇᴅᴀᴛᴏʀs. They are often sensitive to light and may have health problems associated with genetic mutations.

Unfortunately, ᴀʟʙɪɴᴏ/ʟᴇᴜᴄɪsᴛɪᴄ wildlife are easy targets for natural ᴘʀᴇᴅᴀᴛᴏʀs as they stand out in their habitat and sᴛʀᴜɢɢʟᴇ to blend in. However, it’s not to say that the adorable calf won’t make it through to adulthood. Lucky for this pink baby, he has a lot of big protectors around him. We wish this little pink elephant all the best and a long healthy life.  Please share these unusual pictures with your family and friends.

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