Monday, June 26, 2017

'Wait! It's Real?'

We walked up to an exhibit at the Charleston Aquarium Saturday where, looking for all the world like a plastic figure in a creepy blackwater swamp diarama, a huge white alligator posed motionless on its back legs in the glass window.  Every bit of him was bright white except his pink eyes, which suddenly ...
BLINKED!  
 
Meet Alabaster, a rare albino alligator, one of only 50 in the U.S.  

There are no albino alligators in the wild because UV rays in sunlight are deadly to them.  They are reptiles and need the warmth of the sun to regulate their body temperature but sunlight will burn them because of their lack of pigment.  In the wild they die within 24 hours of hatching.





 

Alabaster has lived in a temperature-controlled dark tank for his  eight years of life.  

He is 8 1/2 feet long and still growing. 



 









"Grandma, what big TEETH you have!"




 
One more alligator in the Coastal swamp exhibit.  Can you find him.

🐊 🐊 🐊 🐊 🐊 







13 comments:

  1. What a strange one! I've seen an albino snapping turtle recently but it too was in captivity. Didn't see the last alligator in your photo.

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  2. Wow!! Big teeth indeed. I didn't know Charleston had an aquarium. If you haven't made it to the zoo in Columbia yet you really should.

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  3. I couldn't find the last one in the photo....yikes!

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  4. How old is this "gator" Cynthia????
    Certainly is a lucky one to have been captured I presume
    as he/she was hatched and put into a covered tank. Well done to
    I suppose the "Swamp/River rangers of SC.

    I don't advise that you go into the tank with him/her for a "friendly dip"
    either a la natural or covered, you would still taste the same to the Albino
    'Gator.
    Cheers
    Colin
    PS: Another perfect day here in Terrigal.......gotta boast when the winter weather
    permits and still there are people swimming in the surf - brrrrrrrrrrr!

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  5. You learn something every time you visit the zoo.

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  6. Poor thing always to be in the dark on his own.

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  7. I saw one when we visited Gatorland in Florida, such a shame for them.

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  8. Dear Cynthia, I couldn't find him! As to the albino alligator, I simply never knew they existed. Thanks so much for sharing the photos and the information. How are they found within 24 hours? Is it all just by chance? Peace.

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  9. A bit scary and of course strange

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  10. That certainly would have startled me on first sight...what a large and very unusual gator.

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  11. I've never seen an albino alligator, didn't know they existed until now!

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