Officials: Rare albino alligator at SC Aquarium fighting infection

Officials: Rare albino alligator at SC Aquarium fighting infection
Alabaster, a rare albino alligator, is 22 years old and first arrived at the aquarium in 2009. (Source: Live 5/File)

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Officials at the South Carolina Aquarium say the famed albino alligator housed there is being treated with antibiotics and is resting as it fights an infection.

Aquarium staff members have added water to his tank to provide extra support for his body weight, according to spokesperson Amie Yam-Babinchak.

Aquarium officials say because of an albino alligator's white skin, it is hard for them to stay alive in the wild.
Aquarium officials say because of an albino alligator's white skin, it is hard for them to stay alive in the wild. (Source: Live 5/File)

The alligator’s exhibit has been closed to public viewing to provide a quieter, less stimulating environment as doctors look into what is causing the health concerns, monitor the gator, and provide treatment.

Blood samples have been sent for analysis and staff members are consulting with colleagues around the country to evaluate and discuss treatment options, she said.

“At this time, Alabaster’s prognosis is uncertain,” she said.

The alligator, named Alabaster, hasn’t been feeling well with symptoms including disinterest in food and a skin rash, according to a Facebook post on Thursday.

“Our husbandry team and vet staff are actively engaged in his care and doing everything we can to figure out what’s going on," officials said in the post. " Rest assured he’s getting the best possible care. We’ll continue to keep you updated on Alabaster. In the meantime, send out some positive vibes for our favorite gator guy."

The alligator is 22 years old and first arrived at the aquarium in 2009. Albino alligators are extremely rare, Yam-Babinchak, adding that it is estimated there are only about 50 in the world.

Alabaster the albino alligator has been experiencing health issues, including disinterest in food and a skin rash. Our...

Posted by South Carolina Aquarium on Thursday, July 11, 2019

Yam-Babinchak thanked the public for the supportive messages sent to the aquarium.

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