An incredibly rare sighting of an albino giant panda has been captured by a trail camera in the wild in South Western China. Thought to be the only one of its kind, the panda was filmed going about its business in the Wolong National Nature Reserve in Sichuan Province.
The albino giant panda is believed to be about five or six years old and does not appear to be suffering from any health problems, according to China’s state broadcaster CCTV.
The bear was originally discovered by the cameras in 2019, although had not been seen since until now. It was found interacting with other black and white pandas. Like many albino animals, the panda also has distinctive red eyes.
Reserve authorities had since set up a special team to monitor the panda. The researchers studied the bear’s possible routines and installed and adjusted motion-activated cameras to capture its movements.
Most of the time, giant pandas sport their distinctive black and white bands of colour. However, between the years of 1985 and 2021, researchers in China discovered a small group of 10 all-brown giant pandas in the wild.
Li Sheng, a researcher at Peking University’s School of life sciences, told CCTV that this was the first recorded footage of an albino giant panda in the wild.
“It is still unclear whether its gene will be inherited and steadily passed on in the small panda population, and more follow-up research is needed,” he said.
It’s always exciting when wildlife cameras spot unusual behaviour or rare animals, just like when this photographer set up a camera trap at the wildlife watering hole to see what he could capture.
[Via Channel News Asia]