Sunday, August 12, 2007

Flying Squirrel!

A common theme of this blog is a fascination with urban wilds - small remnant natural areas, and the plants and animals these areas still support. Many species that are common in less developed portions of our state are uncommon or absent in Newton, and it is always exciting to identify a new species that does still occur here. For example, previous postings have discussed the status of wood frogs, spotted salamanders, and red squirrels in Newton. Yesterday, I was thrilled to find a road-killed Southern Flying Squirrel on Winchester Street (photograph above). Note the skin flaps for gliding on the flanks, the flattened tail, and the large eyes for night vision. It was exciting to find that this species still makes it's home in parts of our city. I would love to hear your observations of this species or other unusual flora and fauna that you have encountered in Newton.

1 comment:

Jason said...

Am I to assume that the flattened tail is a natural part of the flying squirrel's anatomy, or the result of the squirrel's untimely demise by a car?