World’s only known WHITE giraffe is fitted with GPS tracking device to protect it from poachers

The world’s only white giraffe has been fitted with a GPS tracking device.

  • A GPS tracking device has been attached to one of the horns of the male giraffe.
  • He is the world’s only white giraffe after poachers killed a female and her calf.
  • The white appearance of the giraffe is caused by leucism, a rare genetic trait that causes a loss of pigmentation.

A GPS tracking device has been attached to the world’s only known white giraffe to help protect it from poachers.

This protective measure comes after a female white giraffe and her calf were killed by poachers in March. Now, the male white giraffe, also borne by the female, is the only one remaining. The Daily Mail reported that according to the Ishaqbini Hirola Community Conservancy, the bodies of the female and the calf were found “in a skeletal state after being killed by armed poachers in Garissa in eastern Kenya”.

Mohammed Ahmednoor, the manager of the conservancy commented on the death of the female giraffe as he said, “Its killing is a blow to tremendous steps taken by the community to conserve rare and unique species, and a wakeup call for continued support to conservation efforts”. Now, to ensure that the world’s only known white giraffe stays protected and safe from poachers, a GPS tracking device has been attached to one of its horns. Furthermore, the device is set to alert wildlife rangers of the location of the giraffe by pinging at every hour.

The unique appearance of the white giraffes is caused by leucism.

Leucism is a rare genetic trait that results in the partial loss of pigmentation and causes white coloured skin, hair, etc. This condition does not mean that giraffes cannot produce dark pigment as they still have dark eyes. Moreover, despite their condition, they do not face genetic disadvantages to their survival. Nevertheless, it is important to note that their white color does make them easier to spot by predators.

Due to her unique appearance, the female white giraffe had reportedly ‘stirred huge interest’ when she was first spotted on the conservancy in 2017. Daily Mail claimed that workers at the Hirola Conservation Programme commented on the time local rangers had tipped them off about the giraffes as they said, “They were so close and extremely calm and seemed not disturbed by our presence […] The mother kept pacing back and forth a few yards in front of us while signalling the baby Giraffe to hide behind the bushes.”

The death of the female white giraffe and her baby was tragic. Hopefully, the GPS tracking device that has now been fitted will ensure the safety of the world’s only remaining white giraffe.

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