Aquarium of the Americas welcomes new white alligator
NEW ORLEANS - The Audubon Aquarium of the Americas in New Orleans is welcoming a new white alligator to its popular Mississippi River Gallery exhibit.
According to the aquarium, the alligator is one of a pair found by Department of Wildlife & Fisheries agents on a federal preserve in West Louisiana back in 2009. The alligators have been residing in a private facility on the West Bank of New Orleans prior to their donation.
The Audubon Zoo is already home to two white gators, named "Two Spot" and "Antoine Blanc", who are brothers of the recently deceased alligator named "Spots" that inhabited the aquarium for close to three decades. An aquarium spokesperson said the new addition is a welcome replacement to the much beloved "Spots" who will be sorely missed.
Audubon's white alligators are leucistic, which means they have a rare genetic condition that reduces the color pigmentation in their skin. The aquarium says that out of the population of five million American alligators, it is believed that less than 15 gators have the rare condition. Due to their condition, alligators with the condition are more vulnerable to the sun and predators when compared to their less strikingly colored brethren.
The aquarium plans to launch a naming contest for the new white gator in the coming weeks. WBRZ.com will publish a link to the voting website when it becomes available.