NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Audubon Aquarium of the Americas welcomes a new white alligator to the Mississippi River Gallery. The alligator is one of a pair found by Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries agents on a Federal Preserve in West Louisiana in 2009. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service donated the alligators to Audubon Nature Institute and they have been residing at the Freeport-McMoRan Audubon Species Survival Center.
Audubon Zoo is home to two white alligators, "Two Spot" and "Antoine Blanc," brothers to the recently deceased alligator affectionately named "Spots" who made Audubon Aquarium his home for 28 years.
"We are truly moved by the amazing community outpouring of sympathy for our recent loss," said Audubon Aquarium Managing Director Rich Toth. "Spots is an irreplaceable ambassador for Louisiana wildlife and will he be sorely missed. We are thankful to have an opportunity to continue to inspire future generations with our newest addition."
Audubon's white alligators are leucistic, having a rare genetic condition that reduces the color pigmentation in their skin. Out of the population of 5 million American alligators, there are thought to be less than 15 gators that have this condition. As with all white animals, they are very vulnerable to the sun and predators.
Audubon Aquarium plans to launch a naming contest for the new white alligator in the coming weeks.