In the chorus of her recent hit song “Formation,” singer/dancer/force-of-nature Beyoncé implies that the animal incarnation of a “hater” is an albino alligator.
Unlike haters, however, albino alligators are very rare creatures. The alligators are technically leucistic—a term used to described animals with whiter coloring due to a lack of pigment, but who are not in fact albino—though are more often referred to by onlookers (and Beyoncé) as albino. According to an article in The Telegraph, in 2009, there were only 12 such alligators left in the world.
These two blue-eyed gators live within the safety of Alligator Bay, a wildlife park in Normandy, France. Leucistic alligators are not well suited to survive in the wild. Their skin is highly sensitive to sunlight, and their coloring makes camouflage an impossible feat (unless they relocate to the Arctic).
So, while American alligators are native to the southeastern U.S., if you ever happen to see a white one, it will almost certainly be in captivity, and if it’s anything like these feisty creatures, it’ll be snapping at its friend. Don’t be haters, alligators—you are both rare and special.
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