A stunned pest controller has beaten odds of 100,000 to one – by catching a rare albino MOLE.
Dave Archer, 52, has been trapping the elusive animals for 30 years and snares as many as 50 a day.
But in three decades he’s never seen an albino before until he found one on farmland in Barnstaple, Devon.
Dave, of Winkleigh, Devon, said the rare animal is male – and probably about a year old.
He said: “I felt it and thought it felt like a big one. But until I pulled it out I didn’t realise how unusual it was going to be.
“Every now and then you here about someone, somewhere catching one of these rare and wonderful animals.
“But in all my 33 years doing this job I’ve caught literally hundreds of thousands of moles and never seen one.
“I’m amazed to have caught one because they’ve achieved an almost mythical status.”
Moles are considered a pest by farmers who pay Dave #16 to remove each one with humane traps.
Dave says white moles stuffed and made into ornaments can sell for as much as #600.
Dave, who runs DKA Pest Control, says he’s run off his feet tackling a boom in mole infestations.
He added: “There aren’t many of us mole catchers left and people are continuously having problems.
“Moles cause havoc with farmers when they are making silage. They can pass on diseases and make mole hills all over lawns and tennis courts.
“The customers don’t really care what colour they are to be honest – they just want them gone.”