White Bottlenose Dolphin spotted on Florida’s East Coast

As per KHOU report, a virtual channel and VHF digital channel 11A, a snow-white albino bottlenose dolphin was spotted at an estuary off Florida’s east coast in the second week of December.

Danielle Carter, a state wildlife volunteer with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) caught the sight of the dolphin.

Carter captured the video and the clip was posted by FWC officials on YouTube. However, the officials declined to reveal the location of the dolphin as they don’t want people to direct their attention on to the rare specimen.

But Carter told Florida Today the video was shot in Brevard County’s Indian River Lagoon on Florida’s east coast.

The two-minute video shows the white dolphin surfacing several times near a shoreline of mangroves. The dolphin is most visible towards the end of the video.

Albino dolphins are rarely seen and there have previously been only 14 verified sightings of albino bottlenose dolphins in the past 50 years. Carter’s spotting would be the 15th such sighting.

These dolphins are often referred to as ‘pink’ dolphin because of their coloration but are considered albino.

Albinism is passed down by the means of recessive genes from both parents. It is characterized by white or light skin and hair, plus pink or red eyes. In addition, it can also often cause impaired vision.

Biologists have confirmed instances of albinism among 20 species of dolphins, whales, and porpoises, including sperm, killer and humpback whales.

Greg Bossart, the veterinary pathologist said, “I don’t believe we have enough clinical information to indicate if they are ‘healthy. However, albinism may not be an adaptive trait in a wild animal as it makes them more prone to predation for obvious reasons”.

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