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Old 01-21-2015, 10:42 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Albino or not albino? :o

Hello!
I was talking to a friend who knows way too much about hedgehogs and she told me that if my hedgie had any banded quills at all then she is not an albino.
However, my hedgie has 3 or 4 banded quills, but they only have a tiny bit of dark brown. Other than that she is completely white. She has a few pale yellow quills closer to her face. Her belly fur is white, and her skin is pink. Her nose is pink, and her eyes are a bright red.
I'll attatch some photos.
So if she's not albino, what is she?

[IMG][/IMG]
[IMG][/IMG]

Last edited by Miss-penelope; 01-21-2015 at 10:46 PM.
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Old 01-21-2015, 10:50 PM   #2 (permalink)
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To my understanding, albinism is not necessarily an all or nothing thing. It sounds to me like you have a hedgie that is mostly albino, but has a spot that is not albino. An albino (of any species) is something that completely lacks pigmentation. So an albino animal would be white furred, quilled, scaled, feathered, whatever they happen to have with pink skin and either red or pink eyes. However, there are cases when an animal is partially albino and partially normal. A two second google search yielded tons of examples, but I'll link one I thought was cool

http://i.imgur.com/phtgL.jpg
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Old 01-21-2015, 11:05 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Did a small amount of research, the term "piebald" may be closer to correct for what you're describing. I wasn't seeing the coloration you mentioned in the photos however. But eh, semantics.
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Old 01-21-2015, 11:43 PM   #4 (permalink)
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thank you for looking that up for me!
And that peacock is really pretty. I didn't know peacocks could have albinism as well.
or, partially. I can't really get a picture of Penelope's banded quills, the spots are very tiny and her yellowish quills are almost impossible to see. I think I've been looking at her too much lol.
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Old 01-21-2015, 11:46 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I looked up piebald hedgehogs, and now that you mentioned it I'm kind of interested to see if she will grow any more colored, and banded quills as she gets older.
She is 8 weeks old and is quilling right now. Her few banded quills are the ones that have recently grown in.
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Old 01-22-2015, 12:16 AM   #6 (permalink)
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It's fairly common for hedgehogs to change color as they go through their various quillings. It may be that those bands in that area will get darker, or they may vanish entirely. I would doubt that you would see color appear where there was previously none though.
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Old 01-22-2015, 02:06 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Albinism is a mutation which causes reduction or absence of the colour pigment melanin (not all pigmentation) in the entire animal - skin, eyes, etc. There is no such thing as a 'partial albino' with coloured spots (quills in this case) of pigment.

The picture of the peacock isn't albinism but leucism, what we call pinto in hedgehogs (and piebald in some other animals like horses and snakes). Leucism is the lack of all skin pigments, not just melanin. Usually shows up as white patches on the animal.
Completely leucistic animals are white with dark eyes, although in hedgehogs pinto's can have ruby or red eyes as well.

If this hedgehog has banded quills it isn't an albino. Pictures are not good enough to see any coloured quills, I just see white, but if they are very light in colour something like pale apricot in combination with pinto could be a possibility.
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Old 01-22-2015, 07:07 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Like I said her tinted quills are impossible to catch on camera. There are only a few quills that are tinted slightly yellow, but it can only be seen in bright lighting. The "banded" quills only have very small specs of color. There is maybe three quills with these specs, but they aren't in a patch. One is on her head, and the other two are spread out also.

I wasn't trying to be technical when I said "partial albino" but I obviously didn't know the word for it lol.

The color of Penelope really isn't important to me but I don't want to go around calling her an albino if she isn't, but she's close enough.
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Old 01-22-2015, 01:11 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Albinos are slightly 'off-white' since they only lack melanin, not all skin pigments. This is why you sometimes still see patterns (yellow) on albino animals; some albino snakes for example. Leucistic animals are a brighter white. But if there are a couple of quills that clearly have coloured banding, your hedgehog is most likely a pale apricot or champagne coloured hedgehog with pinto (leucism). Some of the lighter colours can cause very light, almost albino-red eyes.
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Old 01-22-2015, 03:07 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I wonder if when she gets older she'll have more banded quills. The ones she has I can only see when she puffs up
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