News ID: 200660
Published: 0611 GMT September 16, 2017

Rare white giraffes sighted in Kenya (Video)

Rare white giraffes sighted in Kenya (Video)

A pair of rare white giraffes, a mother and child, have been spotted in Kenya and captured on video for the first time.

The unique giraffes suffer from a genetic condition called leucism, which prevents pigmentation in skin cells and results in a white, pale color, wrote.

Unlike albinism where there is only an absence of melanin, leucism is a condition that is caused by a reduction in multiple types of pigment.

Leucism is a condition where there is loss of multiple types of pigment and results in a white, pale or patchy color. Albinism, on the other hand, is caused by a reduction in melanin pigment alone.

The main way to differentiate the two types is through the eyes. Sufferers of albinism have a similar color loss in hair and skin but they also have this in their eyes. Pale eyes or often pink or red eyes are common as the blood vessels show through, whereas in leucism, this is uncommon.

“'The mother kept pacing back and forth a few yards in front of us while signaling the baby giraffe to hide behind the bushes.”

According to HCP, other than the video, only two known sightings have been made in Kenya and Tanzania. The very first report of a white giraffe in the wild was in January 2016 in Tarangire National park, Tanzania and the second in March 2016 in Ishaqbini conservancy, Garissa County, Kenya.
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