Exotic new squirrel appears in the Netherlands

The first example of the Burmese striped squirrel has been spotted in the wild in the Netherlands.

The pygmy squirrel (taniops macclellandii) can be found in Thailand, Burma, Nepal, Cambodia and parts of China and India.

The association for mammals, which identified the creature from photos taken last month, says some people do keep these squirrels as pets and this is probably an escapee.

Steps should be taken to avoid it spreading in the wild because of the threat it might pose to native squirrels, the association says.

The keeping of four other squirrel sorts has already been banned for this reason.

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