A pink dolphin has become a local celebrity near Lake Charles, Louisiana. The dolphin, whom locals have nicknamed Pinkie, frequents the waters of nearby Calcasieu Lake. Charter boat captain Erik Rue said he first spotted Pinkie in 2007, according to ABC News.
“I was coming in from offshore and it was really flat calm. I saw a pod of dolphins and something looked different on one of them. I shut down and waited. When they came back up to the surface, one was pink! It was stunning,” Rue said of his first sighting of the dolphin in an interview withNewsweek.
Rue said that when he takes people on excursions to Calcasieu Lake, they oftentimes hope to get a glimpse of the dolphin. When people actually see Pinkie up close, Rue says they are speechless.
“I think many are a bit surprised when they actually see it and it’s actually bright pink like we’ve told them,” Rue said to ABC News. “They say ‘Oh my gosh it’s really pink.’ … Everyone whips out their cell phones to try and capture a picture, or video of it and of course, we accommodate.”
Like the passengers on his charter boat, Rue also takes photos of Pinkie when he sees her. According to Newsweek, he has hundreds of photos of the dolphin. In 2015, he said he to ABC News he was creating a photo book about Pinkie.
One of the photos he has of Pinkie shows her mating with another dolphin.
“It sounds crazy, like dolphin porn, but they just happened to flop around a bit so I had a crisp image of it,” he told Newsweek.
Rue’s photo of Pinkie’s mating habits proved she is female.
Though there is a species of pink dolphins that inhabit the Amazon, Pinkie is not among them. She is an albino bottlenose dolphin, according to Newsweek. When dolphins are albino, they are pink. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration told Newsweek that albino bottlenose dolphins are so rare, not much is known about them.