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Fluorescent flying squirrels

ANI
Published : Feb 6, 2019, 8:26 pm IST
Updated : Feb 6, 2019, 8:40 pm IST

Scientists discover flying squirrels that turn hot-pink under ultraviolet light.

Further study is required to understand as to why these flying squirrels fluoresce. (Photo: Pixabay)
 Further study is required to understand as to why these flying squirrels fluoresce. (Photo: Pixabay)

Wisconsin (US): Squirrels are cute, and it turns out that one flying type of squirrel also turns pink. A new study reveals that scientists have discovered that the North American flying squirrel or Glaucomys turn pink at night.

The study in the Journal of Mammology describes that these flying squirrels fluoresce at night. It was during an investigation led by Jon Martin, a professor in the forestry department at Wisconsin's Northland College, who was scanning his backyard with an ultraviolet flashlight to see which lichens, mosses and plants fluoresced, Cnet reported.

A flying squirrel was then spotted, which glowed hot pink under the ultraviolet light. This led to further research leading to the discovery of all North American flying squirrel species that fluoresced.

It is unclear as to why these flying squirrels fluoresce, but researchers attribute it to the survival instinct. The bright night flashes may be to alert other squirrels as they glide through trees.

Tags: journal of mammology, american flying squirrel, glaucomys
Location: United States, Wisconsin