The white lion is a rare morph with a genetic condition called leucism that is caused by a double recessive allele. It is not albino; it has normal pigmentation in the eyes and skin. White lions have occasionally been encountered in and around Kruger National Park and the adjacent Timbavati Private Game Reserve in eastern South Africa.
They were removed from the wild in the 1970s, thus decreasing the white lion gene pool. Nevertheless, 17 births have been recorded in five prides between 2007 and 2015.
White lions are selected for breeding in captivity.They have reportedly been bred in camps in South Africa for use as trophies to be killed during canned hunts.