flying squirrel

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Related to flying squirrel: northern flying squirrel

flying squirrel,

name for certain nocturnal tree squirrelssquirrel,
name for small or medium-sized rodents of the family Sciuridae, found throughout the world except in Australia, Madagascar, and the polar regions; it is applied especially to the tree-living species.
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 adapted for gliding; they do not actually fly. Most are found in Asia, but one species of the genus Pteromys extends into SE Europe and the two species of Glaucomys are found in North America. The gliding mechanism is a fold of furry skin extending along each side of the body from the wrist to the ankle and, in some species, to the tail. When the animal is at rest the flaps are folded; when it stretches its limbs for leaping, as do all tree squirrels, the flaps are stretched out taut like a parachute. The tail in many species is broad and flat, with a flat row of hairs on either side. The animal uses movements of the flaps, limbs, and tail to control direction. The glide always starts from a high tree branch; if it is a long glide the animal comes to rest near the ground and must climb up again. The small North American flying squirrels leap from heights of 50 ft (15 m) or more and may travel a horizontal distance of over 100 ft (30 m). Flying squirrels are seldom seen because of their nocturnal habits and high dwelling places. They nest, often many together, in holes in trees. They feed on a variety of plant matter, as well as on insects. The North American flying squirrels, found in forested regions over much of the continent, have soft, thick, brownish fur. The northern species, Glaucomys sabrinus, of Canada and the NE and W United States, is up to 12 in. (30 cm) long including the tail, which is nearly as long as the head and body; it weighs 4 to 6 1-2 oz (110–180 grams). The southern species, G. volans, of the eastern half of the United States and parts of Mexico and Guatemala, is slightly shorter and weighs about a third as much. Most Old World species are similar, but the giant flying squirrels, genus Pteromys, of S Asia, are up to 4 ft (120 cm) long and may be observed sleeping on branches during the day. The scaly-tailed squirrels, or African flying squirrels, are not true squirrels, but members of a separate rodent family (Anomaluridae). Found only in tropical Africa, they are anatomically quite different from the true flying squirrels and include both gliding and nongliding species. Flying squirrels are classified in the phylum ChordataChordata
, phylum of animals having a notochord, or dorsal stiffening rod, as the chief internal skeletal support at some stage of their development. Most chordates are vertebrates (animals with backbones), but the phylum also includes some small marine invertebrate animals.
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, subphylum Vertebrata, class Mammalia, order Rodentia, family Sciuridae.
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References in periodicals archive ?
After the survey, the researchers successfully obtained another specimen and, additionally, recorded observations of two other flying squirrels. As a result, they included a third member to the enigmatic genus: Biswamoyopterus gaoligongensis, also referred to as the Mount Gaoligong flying squirrel.
There were regulars: the flying squirrels, palm and Malay civets and the gorgeously decorated banded civet and most nights we saw the small, exquisitely patterned leopard cat.
Later that evening, I join another tour organised by Picchio, this time watching flying squirrels, known as musasabi, make sunset glides from their nests.
Despite their name, flying squirrels don't really fly.
Two flying squirrels end their busy night as a snowy owl searches for prey.
The large red flying squirrel Petaurista albiventer (Gray, 1834), which was first recorded as Pteromys albiventer in its type locality Nepal, inhabits northern Pakistan eastward through India and Nepal into southwestern China, where it is located in the Himalayan temperate forests at elevations of 1350 m to the upper tree line limit at about 3000 m (Ellerman, 1940; Ellerman and Morrison-Scott, 1950; Ellerman, 1961; Corbet and Hill, 1992; Roberts, 1977; Thorington et al., 2012; Wang, 2003).
* FOCAL WILDLIFE SPECIES: West Virginia northern flying squirrel and Cheat Mountain salamander
The Indian giant flying squirrel (Petaurista philippensis Elliot, 1839) is a nocturnal arboreal rodent and has the widest distribution among all the flying squirrels in the tropical and sub-tropical zones of southeastern Asia (Wilson & Reeder 2005).
Genetic diversity and population differentiation in the endangered Siberian flying squirrel (Pteromys volans) in a fragmented landscape.--Eur.
And "A Small Surfer" tells the extraordinary tale of precocious Quincy Symonds, otherwise known as the Flying Squirrel.
Flying squirrel (tribe of pteromyini) and Petaurus breviceps are very similar to each other with their big eyes, the white bellies and the stiff integument segment that takes place between their arm and legs and provides soaring and keeping the balance; therefore, they have been regarded as close relatives.