Monday, 28 August 2017

Rare white moose caught on video in Sweden

AUGUST 14, 2017

by Chuck Bednar

If there’s one thing science enthusiasts love, it’s getting a glimpse of a hard-to-find creature, and a new video that has gone viral this month shows a rare white moose – believed to be just one of an estimated 100 living in Sweden – as it walks through the grass and wades across a stream.

The video, which was posted by BBC News, explained that the white moose – which was spotted in the Varmland province of western Sweden – is not albino. Rather, its white coat is the result of a genetic mutation which causes it to be born with an predominantly unpigmented coat of fur.

This condition is known as piebaldism, and according to the US National Library of Medicine, it occurs a creature lacks the cells that produce melanin (the pigment which produces hair, skin and eye color). Piebaldism can affect humans, as well as horses, dogs, pigs, cats, birds and cattle.

The term piebaldism dates back to the 16th century, and was a combination of the word ‘magpie’ and the older meaning of the term ‘bald’ (‘spotted’ or ‘white’) in reference to the magpie’s black and white colored plumage. Unlike albino creatures, piedbald animals do not have red eyes, and they often have at least some blackish specks or patches of fur mixed into their coats.

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