An extremely rare albino squirrel has been caught on camera while frolicking around a park in south London.
Lily, 27, was delighted to have finally captured the rare squirrel on camera this morning as she had spotted it a few times before but hasn’t been quick enough.
She said: “I couldn’t believe it! We’ve actually seen it a few times but never caught it on camera, great to catch it today!”
Footage shows the fluffy creature foraging in the leaves of South Norwood recreational ground in south London this morning.
It then rustles through foliage before darting up a tree and pausing. The squirrel then seems to notice Lily is filming and scurries up even higher into the tree’s branches and disappears out of sight.
The condition is extremely rare in the UK and the Forestry Commission said in 2010 only one in 100,000 squirrels were born albino.
It is caused by a rare gene inherited from parents which prevents pigment from developing in animals.
Virtually all mammals can be born albino and although reptiles, amphibians and lower vertebrates can also be albino they have other pigment cells in their bodies meaning they may not appear white.
The gene is not dominant, meaning an albino squirrel can have grey siblings.
But their white fur makes them more vulnerable to attack from predators as they have no natural camouflage.
Albino animals lack melanin and are white with no markings and with unpigmented pink eyes.
A website created for the public to record sightings of a white squirrel show more than 200 have been spotted in places including Sussex, Kent, Surrey and London.
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