March 4, 2016 12:49 pm

WATCH: Rare albino whale spotted off Baja California

Mexican officials have released footage of a rare albino gray whale seen swimming on the Pacific Coast near Baja California Sur.

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Meet “Gallon of Milk,” Mexico’s favourite albino whale.

The rare albino gray whale was spotted off the coast of Baja California during an annual gray whale census survey by Mexico’s National Commission of Natural Protected Areas. She was first spotted in the 2008—2009 survey when she was just a calf.

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She was spotted with her own calf, which is not albino.

Albinism — which is caused by either the reduction of absence of melanin found in the skin — is common in many mammals. Though there are few documented reports of albinism in whales. In 2014, a rare albino humpback was documented off the coast of Australia.

Eastern gray whales can weight up to 35,000 kg and grow up to about 15 metres long. Their population has been under threat for some time, but there is new evidence suggesting that their populations may be on the rise. However, the Western North Pacific gray whales are considered depleted.

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