Extremely rare baby albino turtle found on an Australian beach
Blink, and you'll miss it. This albino turtle is one of the rarest creatures you'll see in awhile.
The sighting of the cute creature happened when members of the Coolum and North Shore Coast Care group were surveying the area for turtles on Sunday afternoon along Castaways Beach, near Noosa.
"We were gathering turtle research data from a green turtle nest that was laid in November," Leigh Warneminde, president of the group, told Mashable Australia via email.
Five volunteers and a handful of local people were counting egg shells to see how many hatchlings had made it safely to the ocean. They believe the baby turtles ran into the sea around Friday evening.
One of the group's members removed a piece of mesh that was being used to protect the turtle nest from foxes. Upon lifting it up, they found the albino hatchling sitting just under the sand. The discovery was a "complete surprise," Warneminde said.
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Col Limpus, the Queensland government's chief scientist in the threatened species unit, told ABC News the instance of albino hatchlings "occurs at the rate of one in many hundreds of thousands of eggs," making this turtle very rare indeed.
"Normally they don't survive coming out of the nest and when they do they're abnormal and not well suited to the environment, which means the chance of survival is very slim," he said.
It looks like this albino turtle might have a future, though, with volunteers watching it scurry away towards the ocean to follow its other turtle siblings. "It walked very energetically from the nest down to the sea and happily swam away," Warneminde said.
Hopefully, we'll see this albino turtle again real soon.
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