No, you haven’t had too much to drink… it really is a pink elephant

Pink elephants were on parade in a Burmese zoo today and they were causing quite a splash.

The mother and baby clearly loved having a good wallow and tooted with delight when their caretaker dowsed them with the hose. Usually their skin is a reddish brown colour but they turn a light pink when wet. They also have fair eyelashes and toenails.

Despite their unusual appearance, the rare jumbos, which are officially known as white elephants, are not a distinct species to grey elephants nor are they albinos. The animals are treasured in Buddhist countries where their appearance is said to bring good fortune and can herald political change. And in Burma, after decades of military rule, political change does gradually appear to be taking place with the release of iconic opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi last year and elections due to take place in the capital this weekend.

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