It is believed that for every 1,000 mammals born, one is albino. Albinism in animals is extremely rare and despite this, the vast majority of the time, many of the cases of known albino animals are adequately documented and analyzed.
However, there will always be a small number of albino species that go unnoticed by scholars and researchers, mainly due to the particular characteristics of their environment and their herds.
Even if the phenomenon of albinism is not widespread, there are specimens on earth, both of people and animals, who are afflicted by it. An example of this is the albino elephant sighted by a tourist in South African areas, more precisely on the shores of the Shingwedsi river.
The little albino elephant immediately caught the attention of passerby named Nicki Coertze who was there to photograph and observe the behavior of the elephants in their natural habitat.
He suddenly witnessed something spectacular, very rare, bordering on magical and that few have been able to see in life: a small pink elephant was walking along the banks of a river. She was an albino baby elephant, an experience that definitely comes once in a lifetime.
Several albino animals face very difficult obstacles to survive and be accepted by the rest of their kind. So we really hope that this baby elephant, like any other new member of the herd, receives all the love and attention it deserves.
Nicki Coertze, 58, was on safari in Africa when he had the opportunity to witness something extraordinary. One day during his vacation he and his family observed a large herd of African elephants and right in the middle of all of them was a little pink elephant, with its cute ears and a layer of mud.
The life of an albino elephant
This baby elephant has albinism, which is an extremely rare condition in African elephants. Like humans with this genetic disorder, most albino animals lack pigment in their skin, hair, scales, or feathers. Unlike in humans, however, albinism in animals is considered to be a hereditary condition.
Just looking at the baby elephant, it’s hard to realize the impact his condition will have on his life and well-being. You will face many risks throughout your growth, especially in your youth. Fortunately, the little elephant will grow up relatively safely within the national park in which it lives, which will protect it from stalkers and poachers.
Over time, unfortunately, excessive exposure to the sun can hurt this little elephant, especially its skin, which lacks sufficient pigment. And like other albino animals, including humans, it may also suffer from blindness in the future.
But despite these possible obstacles, this baby elephant seems very happy in the company of his family and friends. “I took beautiful photos of the pink elephant. Some of the photos capture him framed by the legs of another elephant, you can really see the color contrast between the two as the calf displays its unique pink color beautifully,” said photographer Coertze.
Coertze also said that he has been visiting the same national park for decades, ever since he was a child. But in all those years, he had never seen an albino elephant before. “With this in mind, I think this is a once in a lifetime experience,” he said.
In most animal species, albinos can appear quite different from the rest of their packs or groups and are even seen as strange and unnatural. As a result, many albino animals are shunned by their own kind. Luckily, it seems that this little baby elephant is being perfectly accepted by his herd, who we hope will continue to love and protect him as they have up to now.