WASHINGTON - Chinese scientists have recently identified a new species of a flying squirrel genus, the rarest and most wanted rodent in the world.

The study published on Thursday in the open-access journal ZooKeys described the specimen unexpectedly found in the collections of the Kunming Institute of Zoology under the Chinese Academy of Sciences.

The genus called Biswamoyopterus is regarded as the most mysterious and rarest amongst all flying squirrels, previously known to comprise two species in southern Asia: the Namdapha flying squirrel in India and the Laotian giant flying squirrel in Laos. Each is only known from a single specimen discovered in 1981 and 2013 respectively.

Chinese researchers collected the new specimen in Mount Gaoligong in Yunnan Province, Southwest China and they initially considered it to belong to the critically endangered Namdapha flying squirrel, listed as one of the top 25 “most wanted” species in the world by the Global Wildlife Conservation. However, the squirrel exhibited distinct features from the previously known species in the genus: a coloration and different anatomy of skull and teeth, according to the study. Then, they conducted a new field survey and obtained another specimen. Finally, they added a third member to the enigmatic genus, referred to as the Mount Gaoligong flying squirrel.