NATIVE RANGE: Southeast Asia
FIRST FINDING IN SLOVENIA: No recorded finings in nature yet
PATHWAYS: escape and release from captivity
POSSIBLE TO FIND: year-round
DESCRIPTION: A medium-sized tree squirrel (head-body length 20–26 cm, with a tail of 17–20 cm) with an olive-brown coloured back and flanks and brown to chestnut or yellowish coloured underparts. The tips of the tail fur are white. No ear tufts are present in any season.
HABITAT: Forests, parks and gardens.
STATUS: Populations are eradicated in Belgium and the Netherlands. Populations present and undergoing eradication in France and Italy.
SIMILAR SPECIES: The native Eurasian red squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) has white underparts and pronounced ear tufts, which may be absent in summer. Variable squirrel (C. finlaysonii), which is occasionally kept in captivity in Europe, has a highly variable colouration but has, in most colour morphs, has extensive white underparts.
NOTE: this species is included in the list of Invasive Alien Species of Union concern (the Union list) of Regulation (EU) 1143/2014. The species included on the Union list are subject to restrictions and measures set out in the Regulation. These include restrictions on keeping, importing, selling, breeding and growing. Member States are required to take action on pathways of unintentional introduction, to take measures for the early detection and rapid eradication of these species, and to manage species that are already widely spread in their territory.