A very unusual albino raccoon has been released by an animal control officer after two Merritt residents caught the animal in their backyard on Tuesday. 

Jim and Bev Pierpoint said they noticed that their cat seemed agitated by something in the woods so they set up a trap in hopes of catching the raccoon.

The trap caught a rare albino raccoon Wednesday morning.

According to a new release, the raccoon displayed no usual gray-brown colors with black strips around its body, and no black mask around its eyes, as most raccoons do.

“At first we thought we had a red fox,” said Jim Pierpoint.

Everyone at the area had to stay back as the caged raccoon hissed and spit at them.

The residents called the Animal Control Officer at the Pamlico Animal Control, Berkley Hill, to examine the raccoon.

Hill confirmed it was an albino raccoon and that it appeared to be healthy.

The raccoon was released back into the wild.

Officials said the odds of seeing an albino raccoon are 750,000 to one.

Most albino raccoons don’t live very long.

They don’t have the normal gray-brown camouflaged color of a normal raccoon, and are, therefore, easy prey for other animals.

Hill said the raccoon was the first albino he had ever seen.

If you are having animal control problems in Pamlico County, please contact Berkley Hill at 252-745-3202.