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Netizens cheer after squirrel thought to be extinct surfaces in Uttarakhand

Also known as Eupetaurus cinereus, the squirrel that was believed to be extinct was last spotted in 1994 in Pakistan.

By: Trends Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: August 18, 2020 2:09:02 pm
woolly flying squirrel, rediscovery of woolly flying squirrel, flying squirrel pictures, Gangotri National Park, Uttarkashi, trending, indian express, indian express newsUnlike the name suggests, the squirrel is incapable of flying but, in reality, glides by launching themselves from treetops.

A picture of a rare flying squirrel created a buzz on social media, with many celebrating the mammal reportedly being spotted at the Gangotri National Park in Uttarakhand. Identified as the woolly squirrel, the mammal had not been spotted in the wild since 1924 and was considered to be extinct.

However, the squirrel, also known as Eupetaurus cinereus, was actually last spotted in 1994 in Pakistan by Peter Zahler, a freelance editor and writer, and Chantal Dietemann, a community college math teacher, according to a New York Times article published in 1995.

The Woolly Flying Squirrel is listed as an endangered species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Here is how netizens reacted to the viral picture of the flying squirrel:

Despite its name suggesting otherwise, this type of squirrel is incapable of flying and glides by launching itself from treetops. They use the flaps of skin to glide and the tail acts as a stabiliser.

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