Rare white buffalo to be named
FARMINGTON - A private zoo will hold a naming ceremony for a rare white buffalo born at the facility last month.
The animals are considered sacred by many American Indian tribes as omens of good fortune and peace. American Indians from across the country have been calling and e-mailing to suggest names for the calf, which was born Nov. 12 at the Woodland Zoo.
Dr. Wynne Brown, a medical doctor and practitioner of natural medicine and acupuncture who is helping to plan the Dec. 23 ceremony, said one in 10 million buffaloes is born white.
The birth of a white buffalo "is a unique opportunity across the nation for healing to occur," she said. "The name of the buffalo must reflect that."
White buffaloes are not considered albinos, and are the result of a rare recessive gene that both parents must possess.
Sonny and Jill Herring, who own the zoo about 45 miles southeast of Pittsburgh, are considering the proposed names submitted by American Indians.
The 5,000-member Lenape nation, indigenous to the Fayette County area, has shown particular interest in the calf and the ceremony.