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Incredibly Rare Albino Penguin Lives Among Its Tuxedoed Family At Polish Zoo

Amy Pilkington 8 May 2020

While some species, like cats and dogs, can come in an uncounted number of patterns and colors, other species are famous for their specific look. A tiger is hardly a tiger if they aren't orange and black, right?

Similarly, while some variation exists among individual penguins, they all look ready to usher a very classy wedding.

Which is why when the Gdańsk zoo revealed that they were now home to a rare albino penguin, people were excited to see it.

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The African penguin was born in December 2018, but the zoo waited until March 2019 to reveal its existence.

Understandably, they were concerned about the chick's survival chances.

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While albinism isn't a health risk on its own, it can be a sign that other genetic differences may be present.

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Albinism and leucism are often confused due to their similarity, but while leucism is a partial lack of melanin in a person or animal, albinism is a complete lack.

Usually, the easiest way to know which you are looking at is by the subject's eyes. Only true albinism results in red eyes.

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Since its reveal, the little penguin has gotten comfortable with its pack of tuxedoed friends.

At first, zookeepers kept it segregated with only its parents, due to worries that the others wouldn't accept it, but careful introductions proved successful.

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And, of course, it's become a popular attraction at the zoo.

At the time of the reveal, the zookeepers explained that without the usual markings, it was impossible to know the gender of the penguin without a DNA test. While researching this feature, I wasn't able to find confirmation of whether it was ever officially determined.

But that's okay. Boy or girl, this little penguin is special.

h/t: The First News

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