This game reserve is home to two of three known wild white lions.
South Africa is an amazing land of diversity. There are few other places where one can visit and see so many wild predator and prey species interacting with one another. There is a good reason Africa is on many people's bucket lists of dream destinations. Some parts are home to the rarest animals on Earth.
Ngala Game Reserve has the distinction of being home to what may be the two rarest lions on Earth. These lions have a recessive gene that gives them a muted color pigmentation that makes them appear white in coloration.
They are not true albinos, but these cats are exceedingly rare. While anyone can go see them on safari to Ngala, finding them in the dense brush is a whole other matter, as this film crew found out when they sought them out.
These lions likely have leucism. This condition is close to albinism, although leucistic animals often retain characteristics of normal colored animals. Albinos usually have pink eyes and noses. While there are plenty of white lions in captivity around the world, these animals are rarely seen in the wild. The main reason for this is simply because their survival odds are not great. These lions stand out from the others in the pride. They are easy targets for predators, and for rival males to pick off. It is likely that very few white lions ever survive to adulthood.
Knowing that, the fact that this pride has not one, but two white lions is amazing. You probably have better odds of winning the lottery than seeing a sight like that in the wild again. Talk about your "once-in-a-lifetime sightings!"
Sightings like these are why we want to add South Africa to our bucket lists one day. If for no other reason than to ride around with some guides like this and see all the natural wonders this part of the world has to offer.