Colorless Great White Shark Washes Up In Australia


Tom Hale

Senior Journalist

clockJan 24 2016, 11:00 UTC
837 Colorless Great White Shark Washes Up In Australia
Luke Anslow/Facebook

If this animal was a Pokémon card, it would be a shiny one.

This all-white shark pup – believed to be a great white shark – was found in Port Hacking in New South Wales, Australia, by Luke Anslow, who uploaded the images to his Facebook page.


You might be mistaken for thinking this shark has albinism, however it actually has a condition called leucism. Both conditions result in reduced pigmentation, however leucism is caused by a lack of many different pigments, while albinism is the absence of just one pigment called melanin. The usual give away is the eyes, which are red or purple with albinism but retain their more conventional color with leucism.

Local fishery departments will investigate how this pale rarity died, as the shark reportedly had no clear signs of injury or cause of death. However, it’s likely that its lack of pigmentation, and therefore poor camouflage, made its struggle for survival a tougher one.

Due to its deceptively small size and lack of pigment, classification of the shark’s species is tricky – with guesses ranging from a mako shark to a porbeagle shark.

To get the scoop, Earth Touch News spoke to John Chisholm from Massachusetts Shark Research Program. "From the pictures I've seen online I'm confident it's a white shark, but I understand the confusion," Chisholm explained. "Juvenile white sharks are very similar in appearance to porbeagles. The easy way to tell the difference is the porbeagle has a secondary caudal keel and the white does not."


These caudal keels are the lateral ridges found on the tail fin of fast-swimming fish and sharks. As you can see from the album of images below, the shark appears to have just one.


It seems people are interested in the shark. It is Leucistic not Albino and i am not aware of another like it being found beforeRyan Chatfield Troy Reilly CJ Anslow Rochelle Brooks Morgan Anslow Tracey Lentell

Posted by Luke Anslow on Wednesday, 20 January 2016


[H/T: Earth Touch News]

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