He really broke out of his shell.
Touching video from a Florida wildlife park shows the moment an extremely rare albino alligator gently entered the world Saturday.
The footage shows the bug-eyed baby boy cautiously poking its pale head out of a speckled egg with a little assistance from a staffer.
Sam Haught, co-owner of Wild Florida Airboats & Gator Park that has successfully hatched an albino gator in each of the last three years, said that there are only about 100 of these animals in the world and that all require human care and a controlled setting to survive.
Unable to blend in with their environment like regularly colored alligators, the few albinos that are born in the wild are usually gobbled up by predators soon after hatching, Haught said.
Their appearance presents plenty of other challenges that make swamp survival all but impossible. Unaware of their bright color that makes it difficult to sneak up on prey, the light-sensitive creatures also instinctively attempt to catch a few rays but end up badly sunburned.
Haught said the newest 6-inch baby gator’s “superstar” parents, Snowflake and Blizzard, produced a total of nine eggs — but only one managed to successfully hatch.
The lone baby has happily munched on minnows since his arrival while enjoying the comforts of a climate-controlled aquarium.
The park will hold a naming contest for the new arrival, but has generally limited previous submissions to winter references due to the animal’s color.
Albino alligators, Haught said, are “showstoppers” at the facility and always draw unique interest, particularly from captivated kids.
“We continue to breed them because we want people to see alligators as more than just mindless eating and killing machines,” Haught said. “We want people to become fascinated by them and to have a different emotional response than just fear.”