1. ITV Report

Photographer spots ultra-rare white squirrel with 'sinister black eyes'

A wildlife photographer was stunned after she spotted this one-in-a-million non-Albino white squirrel - with "sinister black eyes".

Credit: SWNS

The ultra-rare creature is thought to be one of about five grey squirrels in Britain suffering from leucism - a mutated gene which turns them pure white but keeps their eyes black.

Credit: SWNS

It means the squirrel would not have the same sight problems associated with albino squirrels, who have tell-tale red or pink eyes.

Credit: SWNS

Amateur wildlife photographer Emma Tingay grabbed her camera as soon as she spotted the ghostly squirrel in the garden of her flat in High Wycombe, Bucks. Emma, 40, said:

I've seen albino squirrels before, but never one like this. It's like all the colour was drained from it.

I've seen him a few times since, so we've nicknamed him Snowflake.

There are more than five million grey squirrels in Britain, but wildlife experts reckon fewer than one in a million are born with the recessive gene that causes leucism.

While albinism is caused by a total lack of the skin pigment melanin, leucism is a caused by a reduction in all types of skin-colouring cells.

Credit: SWNS