Hoppy little white fluffy bunny rabbits eating carrots and taking naps under rose bushes, not dangerous at all! Unless of course, you were a black widow spider trying to cross the lawn. Albino animals are known for their lack of color pigmentation in their skin and eyes.
Paint It Black In the animal kingdom there are around sixty-five known species that possess this rare gene mutation causing an entire absence of color pigmentation. These animals stand out from the crowd because even though they may be entirely white their eyes are usually a shade of red or pink. For example, the Albino Alligator.
This is an Albino Alligator found at The Everglades Park in Florida. Other albino animals include fish, amphibians, birds, and insects such as butterflies and grasshoppers. There have been a few reported sightings of albino deer, but they are quite rare. The invertebrate world is where you will find the majority of albinos with around seventy-five percent of all albino animals living in this group.
Albinism in humans is a congenital disorder that affects one in every seventeen thousand people. This occurs when the body is unable to produce the enzyme tyrosinase which is responsible for melanin production. Melanin is what gives color to skin, hair, and eyes. Albinism can also affect the retina and cause problems with vision.
Albinism is a recessive gene meaning both parents carry the gene but it doesn’t manifest itself in their outward appearance. When two carriers of albinism mate, there is a one in four chance that their offspring will inherit the disorder and be born an albino.
There are different degrees of albinism as well. Some people are born with very little pigmentation while others are paler but can tan or freckle. The level of pigmentation can also change throughout an albino’s life because melanin production will continue to decrease as the personages.
Albinism is not particularly harmful in humans, however, in some animals, it can be a disadvantage. For example, in birds, albinos are more susceptible to being eaten by predators. In some fish, the lack of color makes them less visible to their prey and they can easily become lunch.
In the wild, albinos are at a disadvantage because they stand out and are easy targets for predators. Their lack of color makes them easy to see against the natural background. In the animal world, albinos are not very common and make up only about one percent of the population. This is mostly because albinism is usually a disadvantage in the wild.