By Associated Press - Saturday, December 12, 2020

BOSTON (AP) - An animal welfare group in Massachusetts is finding new homes for more than 40 sugar gliders, a type of marsupial, after they quickly started to reproduce and overwhelmed their previous owner.

MSPCA-Angell, a nonprofit based in Boston, announced Friday that it had taken in 44 sugar gliders that needed new owners. Within hours, the group received more than 1,000 adoption requests, it said.

The group is now sorting through the requests to find the best homes for the animals. It described them as playful and curious marsupials that have “a natural affinity for pouches - or shirt pockets.”

The mammals are commonly found in Australia and can glide on skin folds similar to flying squirrels.

All 44 sugar gliders come from a single home in Hampshire County, the MSPCA said. The owner surrendered the animals when they started to reproduce. Most of them are about a year old, but the group said one was 13 years old.

Some of the female marsupials may be pregnant and will be held until they give birth. When the time comes, the MSPCA said, it will also need to find new homes for any offspring.

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