Image Source The Verge
Extremely rare white giraffes were recently spotted by Rangers from the Hirola Conservation Program in Garissa County, Kenya in Africa.
For sometime there had been rumors circulating of a white baby giraffe in the area and after a tip off the rangers finally managed to find the unique creature.
Image Source Mongabay
The snow white condition is called Leucism and is caused by a partial loss of pigmentation in the animal. It can happen to any animal and many different creatures have been discovered with this condition over the years but to see a snow white giraffe is a rare find.
There have been sightings of white giraffes in Tanzania’s Tarangire National park but this is the first time proper photos have been taken of these unusual creatures roaming the plains of Kenya in Africa.
Image Source The Sun
Are Giraffes in Kenya In Africa Endangered?
Giraffe populations are sadly in decline thanks to a loss of their natural habitat and illegal hunting on the plains of Kenya in Africa. It is estimated that the giraffe population has fallen by 40 percent over the past 30 years. That means there are less than 100,000 of these magnificent animals left in the world.
But it is hoped that the discovery of these rare white giraffes will bring attention to these creatures and a renewed energy to protect and save these animals.
What Are Rare White Giraffes Called?
While some refer to these rare white giraffes as albinos that is not the case, they have a condition called leucism which is what gives these giraffe’s their white hide.
What is Leucism?
Leucism is a rare condition which gives a partial loss of pigmentation in an animals skin which causes white or pale coloration of the skin, hair, feathers or scales.
How Does Leucism Affect Their Lives
Because the animal’s skin or fur becomes white the animal looses it’s ability to camouflage itself into the natural background. For herbivores such as giraffes it makes them a much easier target for predators to spot and could very well increase their chances of being attacked.
It also has an effect on predators as the whiteness of their skin makes it extremely difficult to sneak up on prey.
Rare White Giraffes – UPDATE
Sadly these 2 rare white giraffes were found killed by poachers. The remains of the mother and her calf were found by rangers at a nature conservancy in Garissa County, Kenya in Africa. All signs indicate that these rare animals had been butchered by armed poachers.
These were the only rare white giraffes in the existence and they were heartlessly killed for greed.
Now the world’s only known white giraffe was equipped with a GPS tracking device in northeastern Kenya, environmentalists report.
The male giraffe was until recently one of three giraffes endowed with the rare genetic trait. But the two other specimens – a white female and her calf – were killed by poachers.
It has made me both sad and angry reading the update about these peaceful creatures and I hope karma catches up with these poachers.