In Australia, an albino baby kangaroo named Joey was born. Very rare occurrence.
A female gray kangaroo with dark brown hair and eyes gave birth to a white kangaroo named Joey last month at the Panorama Garden Estate in southeast Melbourne, Australia. It was his father, the same genetic disorder, albinism, who sent him the gene. This phenomenon is exceptional because the mutation affects only one kangaroo in 50 to 100,000 newborns, says Australian mammal Mark Eldridge.
“There are many white kangaroos in our sanctuary. The first came to us from Border Town eight years ago“The owner of the park, Annemarie van Rui, says that overall, the Panorama Garden Estate Sanctuary has nine kangaroos that are hard to find in the wild.
White or albino kangaroos, which are more fragile and vulnerable than their offspring, have a lower than average chance of survival. Their light color makes them easily exposed to predators and their poor eyesight affects their hunting ability. Scientists have also noted difficulties in finding a mate among these individuals. Finally, like humans, albinism promotes the development of skin cancer.
This does not apply to white kangaroos. “If a kangaroo has the genes to inhibit any pigmentation, it is albino. But he could simply be a carrier of a genetic mutation that produces the white of their coat, while at the same time having pigmentation on his eyes or on his muzzle; They are two different things“, Says Mark Eldridge.
500 white kangaroos
According to the scientist, there were no more than 500 white or albino kangaroos in the country before the catastrophic fires of 2019 and 2020. Nevertheless, the population of albino kangaroos has increased in recent years, largely due to decline and scarcity of natural enemies.
The sanctuary, which serves a wide variety of species, is generally open to the public. “But, like other businesses, we had to close due to health restrictions“, Annemarie van Roe.”So little Joey’s birth was a nice surprise when he took his head out of his pocket.“
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