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Cute creature mystery brings excitement to Henderson neighborhood

Posted at 11:27 PM, Mar 21, 2018

A lemur, ferret or raccoon.  Those were some of the initial guesses as people in the Inspirada area spotted a creature with a long ringed tail running through their yards and over roofs.

The mystery extended to Facebook when Megan Stay posted a picture of the cute critter sitting on her fence post online asking, "Anyone missing an exotic pet?"

"My son shouted doggie and so I looked down and saw the swishing tail," Stay said. "It looked like it was trying to get in the dog door."

She soon got many of those same guesses, some even saying they'd take it in as a pet.

That is until someone familiar with desert wildlife identified the critter as a ringtail cat.

Soon other neighbors spotted the ringtail cat on another home.

"You've got to come up. You can see the tail," a woman said leading a 13 Action News camera to the animal.

A call to the Nevada Department of Wildlife confirmed the member of the raccoon family is common in the Southern Nevada desert, but the spokesman said it was the first call he ever received about one being in a neighborhood.

The animal nocturnal and typically eats insects and smaller animals, like mice and rabbits.

The wildlife experts said, although they are cute, people should not try to play with or pet a ringtail because they could carry disease.

They also said it isn't a good idea to leave food out for the animals either.

Although the ringtail cat provided a little excitement for those in Inspirada Wednesday, once the sun set it hopped off its rooftop perch likely headed for the nearby desert.

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