Magnolia Plantation's petting zoo ups their albino raccoon count

Image by Flickr user MaryEllen and Paul

Magnolia Plantation and Gardens in Charleston has received a second rare albino raccoon to add to its petting zoo exhibit.

Petting zoo director Chris Smith says that Magnolia's two raccoons are tame enough to be cared for in the exhibit but won't be part of the animals that children can pet because they're still wild animals.

Smith says the albino raccoons aren't safe in the wild because their lack of coloring makes them an easy target for predators. The lack of pigment is caused by a genetic defect.

The petting zoo wants children to submit names for the two albino raccoons and a normal colored one. Entries can be sent to: Name the Raccoons, Magnolia Plantation and Gardens, 3550 Ashley River Road., Charleston, S.C. 29414. The deadline is January 30.