Have you ever noticed that almost all domesticated animals have a variety of eye colours, including blue, green, and brown? Well, research suggests that in the wild, most animals only exist with either light or dark eyes. With this said, however, there are a few exceptions to this rule. While it may be rare to find these beautiful blues among carnivores and herbivores alike, it certainly is worth the search for these 12 animals with blue eyes.
- Mountain Lions
- White Tigers
- Camiguin Hawk-owls
- Blue-eyed Black Lemurs
- Dromedary Camels
- Pine Martens
- Wild Horses
- Siberian Husky
- Siamese cat
- Sphynx cats
It’s always fascinating to discover something new and in 2019, this happened with the discovery of coyotes with bright blue eyes! This genetic mutation is usually exclusive to humans, so it was quite a surprise when reports started coming in of wild coyotes in California that had beautiful sapphire-coloured eyes.
This unique phenomenon isn’t restricted to just one species, either – since then there have been reports of these special creatures being spotted as far as British Columbia! Scientists are still attempting to find an explanation for why some coyote populations have been able to develop these eye colours but it remains a mystery.
The idea of blue-eyed rabbits is definitely out of the ordinary and can often surprise or amaze many animal enthusiasts. It’s almost impossible to spot a naturally occurring blue-eyed rabbit, but there is always the possibility that one may indeed exist in the wild.
This rare occurrence happens more so in captivity due to a recessive trait responsible for this unusual eye colouration. If a female and a male rabbit, both with blue eyes, manage to find each other in the wild, they have the potential to create offspring with blue eyes – though their scope of finding another rabbit with such an abnormality might be slim.
Aside from incredibly rare cases, rabbits are known to have either brown or reddish eyes and thus seeing them with blue eyes is not something the majority will likely experience.
In the world of llamas, alpacas, guanacos and vicunas, eye colour can be a source of conversation. The unique trait of the blue-eye mutation is rare amongst these species and is even looked down upon in llama shows. This is especially true in female llamas who usually possess white or silver-coloured fleece; it’s not as common amongst males.
The truth is that the majority of llama eyes are dark in colour, yet this distinguishing factor has established its presence within these animals.
A blue-eyed groundhog is an incredibly rare occurrence, and it might even be the rarest blue-eyed animal in existence. There have been no documented sightings of a ‘normal’ blue-eyed groundhog in the wild, but some albino groundhogs that have shown up with bright blue eyes.
So, while this still isn’t a “normal” occurrence, it certainly is one of nature’s most unique traits. It would be a real treat to witness such a creature in its natural habitat and there is much admiration for those who have seen one up close.
While it might seem strange, one of the most well-known creatures to be born with blue eyes is the baby cougar. These striking cat-like creatures can gain attention first and foremost for their eye colour.
However, as they grow older and become adults – these same cougars will change their eye colour to brown. This change occurs naturally as a means to help the animal blend in with its environment; after all, you don’t find too many blue-eyed animals out in the wild.
While it’s rare that any type of animal is born with blue eyes, it’s worth noting that this phenomenon happens almost exclusively among cats.
Leopards, much like cougars, are born with amazing blue eyes. However, their eye colour tends to transition to the stunning amber shades that we recognize in adulthood. Every now and then, a lucky leopard keeper catches a glimpse of a rare adult leopard with its blue eyes still intact – but these sightings are few and far between.
Only recently has photographic evidence been captured that proves these creatures of the night can keep their baby blues into adulthood! One dedicated wildlife photographer managed to snap an image showing a magnificent leopard with bright blue eyes looking right back at her; making it one of the best-documented rare sightings of this kind.
White tigers are a remarkable species of Bengal and Siberian tigers. While they may look like leucistic or albino animals due to their white fur and bright blue eyes, they are actually much rarer.
And while these white tigers may be seen in some zoos throughout the world, the only place in which wild white tigers can be found is in India where a handful of this majestic species still roam.
It is wondrous to think that such a specific trait – the lack of pigment resulting in snow-white fur and blue eyes – has become common among this particular species.
While blue-eyed birds are incredibly rare, the Camiguin hawk owl is aptly known for its beautiful brilliant blue eyes. Discovered in 2012 and currently endangered, this new species of owl can be found only on the small island of Camiguin in the Philippines.
It is the only bird species that have been discovered with blue eyes and it stands apart from other birds thanks to its unique features. While pelicans may have a brief mating period during which their eye colour changes to blue, their eyes quickly revert back to yellow or brown after it ends, making them different from the Camiguin hawk owl.
Given its rarity, scientists have not yet been able to prove or disprove whether or not it’s the world’s only bird species with blue eyes.
Blue-eyed Black Lemurs
The blue-eyed black lemur is known as the “jewel” of Madagascar, an island nation off the coast of East Africa. This species of lemur, the only primate other than humans to boast this eye colour, is quite special. Its males and females alike have electric, baby-blue eyes that stand out against their coal-black fur.
Unfortunately, these endangered animals are facing a decline in numbers due to heavy habitat destruction on the island as a result of human settlement. What was once a lush landscape for these creatures is now rapidly vanishing and with it their hopes for survival.
Dromedary camels, also known as Arabian camels, are perhaps one of the rarest animals alive! Although once spotted roaming the wild over 2,000 years ago, these impressive creatures are now largely found in zoos and as domesticated farm animals.
However, a specific breed known for its blue eyes is even more remarkable; with an estimated population of less than a thousand specimens in the whole world, these animals have become a symbol of rarity. The speciality of this unique camel does not end with its beautiful blue eyes- it’s up to 6ft 8 inches tall making it one of the tallest living mammals with blue eyes.
These majestic camels can either possess their eye colour naturally or through selective breeding making it easier to observe and appreciate them at farms and zoos across Africa and the Arabian Peninsula.
While pine martens may not be a familiar animal to many people, they have certainly made a name for themselves with their unique colouration. Quite famously, they possess blue eyes and eyeshine, a characteristic that is almost unheard of elsewhere in the animal kingdom. Most animals have white, yellow, red or green eyeshine when illuminated by light.
Though found throughout Europe, these animals were once heavily hunted for their fur before becoming protected by law. Now on the brink of extinction, these animals deserve our efforts and protection to ensure they stay secure and able to survive in the wild.
Although much less common than domesticated horses, wild horses can still develop blue eyes without the need for selective breeding. This natural occurrence has been sighted in wild horse populations of every continent but Antarctica, though many horse species around the world are endangered due to domesticating and eradication. Seeing a wild horse with blue eyes is a beautiful, unique moment.
The Siberian husky is a medium-sized working dog thanks to its strength and agility. Native to Siberia, the husky’s ability to withstand cold climates earned it a spot as a loyal companion and reliable working animal in the Arctic. But one of its most charming features is its piercing blue eyes; many have ‘bi-eye’ which refers to two different eye colours – usually brown and blue – or combinations like blue with particoloured eyes.
Siamese cats are a breed of domestic cat that originated in Thailand and is among the oldest existing cat breeds in the world. They are distinguished by their sleek bodies, triangular heads, almond-shaped eyes and particularly, their signature startlingly blue eyes. According to folklore, a mysterious blue flame once appeared from an ancient ruin, consuming a temple and turning it into a small white female cat with piercing blue eyes – this mythical event is said to be the origin of all Siamese cats.
Sphynx cats are an extremely unique breed known for their lack of fur and their characteristic large, round eyes. This breed is adored by many due to its mesmerizing blue hue – a striking contrast compared to the average colours and patterns of house cats. Not only do they have beautiful eyes, but the sleek skin of a Sphynx cat gives them a famously endearing facial expression unlike any other.
What animals can have blue eyes?
Blue-eyed dogs, cats, horses, goats, camels, and llamas can all be found.
Do any mammals have blue eyes?
It may surprise many to learn that there are actually two species of mammal with blue eyes – the Arctic fox and the Saiga antelope. Both inhabit harsh, northern environments, equipped to survive in cold temperatures, short growing seasons and extended periods of darkness.
What animal is born with blue eyes?
One of the most unique animals born with blue eyes is the baby snow leopard.
Do any lions have blue eyes?
Curiously, yes, some lions have been documented with blue eyes. In some cases, this natural mutation can affect the entire pride of lions – not just occasional individuals.
Do any tigers have blue eyes?
Although it may seem hard to believe, some tigers actually do have blue eyes. Through a mutation that affects the normally orange-pigmented tapetum lucidum in their eyes, these truly remarkable creatures can be found with deep blue eyes!
Rahul M Suresh
Visiting the Zoo can be an exciting and educational experience for all involved. As a guide, I have the privilege of helping students and visitors alike to appreciate these animals in their natural habitat as well as introducing them to the various aspects of zoo life. I provide detailed information about the individual animals and their habitats, giving visitors an opportunity to understand each one more fully and appreciate them in a more intimate way.