Humans are very much in the "seeing is believing" category.
Not saying that we can't take things on faith. But if given the option, we will almost always choose to see rather than just hear about something.
Fair enough, right? Sometimes seeing is one of the best ways to know that something is real. Case in point: we've known about black holes for decades. But when the first-ever photo of one was released on April 10, it made it even more certain that scientists understood what black holes were all about.
And now you can add the albino giant panda to that category!
Rare and wonderful
You are looking at the first-ever photo of a WHITE giant panda in the world. This #panda was spotted by a surveillance camera at a natural reserve in SW China's Sichuan in April. Scientists believe the color change is a result of albino and the panda is in good health. pic.twitter.com/KWBr4Fl6TD
— People's Daily, China (@PDChina) May 25, 2019
This rare and wonderful picture is of the first albino giant panda ever reported. It was found and photographed last month on a surveillance camera in Wolong National Nature Reserve in Sichuan Province, China. (Which explains why it's kind of blurry!)
An albino animal is different than many animals that appear white. Many animals can appear all white, but they will still have some sort of dark colour on their body. For example, a polar bear actually have black skin under its fur and its nose is black. Similarly, there have been some giant pandas that appear to be albinos, but they just have much fainter markings than normal pandas.
Natural and healthy
A true albino animal has no pigment at all — every part of its body is white (the exceptions are eyes, beaks, claws, and skin, all of which can appear yellowish or pinkish). And a true albino panda is what we're seeing in this new photo.
Despite the lack of pigment, most albino animals are healthy. The experts at the Wolong Sanctuary are sure that this is the case with this animal, too. So there you have it — first-ever photo of an albino giant panda. We do hope that it's not the last!