Learn more about the Palm Beach Zoo - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Learn more about the Palm Beach Zoo

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By Rachel Leigh

The Palm Beach Zoo has a rare creature swimming around in their water. No, it's not the Lock Ness Monster. It's Mardi, a white alligator who's spending his summer in sunny Florida. And like many in Florida, he's only visiting.

"Mardi actually came to us from the Audubon Zoo in Louisiana. And he'll be here until the end of September," says Zoological Manager of Training Alison Hayner. 

Mardi is leucistic, so that means he has very little pigment in his skin. Lucky for him, some construction workers found Mardi and brought him to Audubon.

Alison says due to his lack of camouflage, Mardi is a targeted meal for another predator. He's also very susceptible to sunburn.

If you go to see Mardi and he seems to be hanging out at the bottom, it's quite alright.

"They [alligators] can hold their breath for up to two hours."

And when it comes to the grocery bill, since Mardi is a cold blooded animal, he doesn't cost the zoo too much money.

"Right now, Mardi is fed twice a week. During the winter times, they go off feeding, and he'll probably eat every two weeks."

This is so he can conserve energy and keep his body temperature regulated.

But before we left, Mardi did move a little bit for the camera!

Next, it was off to see the Malaysian Tigers, Mata and Rimba. "They're very playful. They're just over 2 years old, and they're brothers, so they do play with each other a lot."

And you'll find, the pair act a lot like your cats at home.

"Cats in general all have specific behaviors as far as the scratching of the nails. Even as a large cat, they still purr."

Lastly, it was time to watch Spencer having breakfast. Since he's a taper, he scoops up the food with his snout.

And like many guys, he's having a hard time winning over his lady friend, Alyssa. "He's is pretty much ready to breed, so it's a lot of chasing. And she's just not really into it."

Aww... the chase! Flowers usually work for me!

After hanging out with the animals it was time to head out, but I'll be back. There's always something new at the zoo!

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