Here are some pictures of a rare, true albino puma (mountain lion) cub that was rescued in Colombia. He/she was discovered in the Aburra Valley metropolitan area in north-western Colombia. She is the first albino puma recorded in that country.
UPDATE THE NEXT DAY: This is not a puma but a jaguarundi. The news media reported this cat as a puma initially but after 12 hours they now report the cat as a jaguarundi. That makes sense. I was taken in. The reason why is because this is a very young kitten and at that age it is possible to mistake this kitten for a puma I would say when the markings have all be erased by albinism. The jaguarundi and puma are very different in appearance and size when adults but when kittens the difference is masked as the familiar and strange jaguarundi shape has not developed. I’m sorry for the error.
This video was available about 10 hours after I wrote the post.
The information below relates to the puma or mountain lion and therefore is technically irrelevant at this stage because of the update I mention above.
As evidence of their rarity, the best book on the wild cats that there is: Wild Cats of the World by Mel and Fiona Sunquist, does not mention albino pumas! Amazing. They refer to black pumas (melanistic pumas) which are not that unusual. But the true albino puma is a great rarity.
RELATED: Can pumas be white? – white pumas are not necessarily albino. White pumas have fur strands that do not have pigmentation but they have coloured eyes. Albinos have pink eyes. Albino eyes show up as pink because the tiny red blood vessels in the iris, or colored part of the eye, show through. There is no pigment. Albinos can’t produce pigment.
I hope this little cub is well protected throughout her life. I’d expect her to be captive all her life. It would be too dangerous to return her to the wild as there would be a reasonable likelihood of a crazy hunter who would take a fancy to shooting her dead. You know: the rarer the animal the keener shooters are to kill and possess it. It’s quite insane. The last white adult tiger in the wild was shot by a hunter in India. They spared the cub who is the sole foundation cat of all white tigers which is why they are inbred.
Sarah Hartwell of messybeast.com says that albino pumas have been reported but she has very little information about them which is also indicative of their extreme rarity.
Update the next day: the book that I refer to above does not mention albino jaguarundi, for the sake of completeness. We know that the jaguarundi can be seen in a range of different morphs. Once again this is testament to the extreme rarity of this albino kitten.
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Pictures of a puma on an iceberg off the Upsala glacier in Patagonia’s Los Glaciares National Park, Argentina