Wildlife Photographer Stumbles Upon Extremely Rare “Pale Tiger” in India



Wildlife photographer Nilanjan Ray was in for a surprise when he recently visited the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve in southern India. As they passed through, a curious looking “pale tiger” peered out from the forest, allowing Ray to snap these images of the incredibly rare beast.

pale tiger

Next, something incredible happened. “As we were slowly driving past that stretch, we saw a white looking tiger sitting on the hillside, half concealed by undergrowth, and looking at us. It looked rather curious and cute than scared or aggressive. And then another tiger a normal, orange one appeared, much closer to us. We could see its head behind a bush. They could be siblings, or mother and cub the white one looked like a sub-adult. They played hide and seek with us for a while before vanishing, but not before I had taken some photos.”

Ray sent his images to Sanctuary Asia, the leading wildlife conservation publication in India, and Belinda Wright.

Both confirmed his findings, “the palest tiger I have ever seen on the record or heard about in literature.”

Zoologist Parvish Pandya commented that the pale coloration is most likely due to a color morphism, a phenomenon due to the mixed genetic pool in the wild. Additionally, the forest department informed Ray that the tiger seemed leucistic, rather than albino. Leucism occurs due to reduced levels of several different pigments, including, but not limited to, melanin.

Source

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Wildlife Photographer Stumbles Upon Extremely Rare “Pale Tiger” in India

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