Sugar gliders get their name from their preference for sugary nectarous food and their ability to glide through the air with the help of a thin membrane between their front and back legs, similar to a flying squirrel. Extremely social animals, sugar gliders live in large colonies in territories that span from two to three acres and regularly engage in social grooming to promote health, hygiene, and bonding. Appearance-wise, they possess a squirrel-like body with long, partially prehensile tails and large eyes for seeing in the dark.
As pets, the sugar glider requires special care with close attention to socialization and diet. Their social nature means they often fare better in pairs, but they require regular and frequent bonding time with their human caretakers, who they typically come to recognize. Once bonded to its caretaker, the sugar glider will remain bonded for life, although the process can take several weeks. Wild gliders are omnivorous, and exotic veterinarians recommend that owners mimic this diet by providing pets with a variety of fresh fruit and vegetables and access to live protein, such as meal worms, eggs, and lean cuts of meat.