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White opossum - Probably leucistic

29/11/2009 16:25:56

White opossum, photographed in

Leucistic Opossum baby.
November 2009. This weeks leucistic animal is an opossum, sent in by reader Cliff Ball, from Janesville in Wisconsin, USA. The white opossum is part of a family of at least three young ones and one older female (the mother) that all travel together frequently. The white opossum and its two siblings are about half grown judging from the size difference between them and the mother.

Leucism (or Leukism)
Leucism is a very unusual condition whereby the pigmentation cells in an animal or bird fail to develop properly. This can result in unusual white patches appearing on the animal, or, more rarely, completely white creatures.

Click here to see our gallery of albino and leucistic animals and birds.

two of the baby opossums with normal colouring

the leucistic opossum with a normally coloured sibling

All photos are copyright Cliff Ball

Read the comments about this article and leave your own comment

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Posted by: kdrcyber | 14 Nov 2015 00:48:01

Southeastern Wisconsin

We are delighted that a leucistic white opossum visited our property on May 20, 2015. She is a real beauty and has tiny babies growing in her pouch! She has continued her nightly visits, and we have uploaded videos of her to our YouTube channel "Critter Farm." We live about 25 mile northeast of the above poster (Bill Stone of Burlington, WI) so I echo his sentiment that the trait may be more prevalent in our general area.

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Posted by: Critter Farm | 29 May 2015 16:11:04

Surprise visitor

Surprised a white (with dark ears and eyes) opossum in my garage this evening. I've never seen one, so I got a surprise, too. I'm hoping to get a decent photo of it, so have the garage closed. I put some cat food out for it. They're so shy!
I live in Bella vista, Arkansas, in the northwest corner of the state.
How do I post a photo?

Posted by: Alice smith | 05 Aug 2013 03:25:59

southeast texas

yeah ive been seeing one around my yard, im gonna trap it and release some where's else unless the wildlife rehabilitation place wants it, i read a story they found one around here in 2009 and they was excited to get it

Posted by: lilshaun | 09 Apr 2013 02:01:35

White opossums in mid-Atlantic region

Having gone white-haired myself, I could only wonder if the large startlingly white opossum, with but a bit gray on its face, sheltering for years by me inside the Beltway, was simply old. Living now in the pines of lower Delaware, I'm delighted to learn it's a natural variation, since my new bright-white opossum "friend" is small enough to be young.

Posted by: Janice Byer | 18 Mar 2013 17:56:14

Owner of Brightonwoods Orchard, Burlington, WI

For the past several days we have noticed a white opossum at the base of our backyard bird feeder along with our usual normal colored opossums. I initially thought it was an albino, however after looking this up I tumbled to your website and realized the opossum is a leucistic animal instead. I noticed your Nov. 2009 listing of a similar animal pictured in Janesville, WI, which is about 40 miles west of our farm. Possibly the genetic trait is more prevalent in our general area. I will send a picture separately.

Bill Stone

Posted by: Bill Stone | 16 Mar 2013 20:13:31

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