Albino alligator living at aquarium gains 20 pounds in year

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) – Alabaster, the albino alligator living at the South Carolina Aquarium in Charleston, is 20 pounds heavier and 3 inches longer than a year ago.

The aquarium says about 15 staffers assisted Tuesday in giving an annual checkup to Alabaster, one of only about 50 albino alligators known to be alive in the world.

The alligator lives in the aquarium’s black swamp exhibit and now weighs 186 pounds. The 19-year-old gator is 8.5 feet long.

Aquarium officials say that about one in 100,000 alligators is an albino. But because of their white skin, they usually don’t survive long. Because of that, Alabaster can never be returned to the wild.

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