Baby Olinguito
Baby Olinguito photographed in Colombia (SavingSpecies)

Conservationists in Colombia have released a photograph of a baby olinguito, a cute teddy-bear looking mammal discovered earlier this year.

The photograph, taken by conservation group SavingSpecies, shows the fluffy, hand-sized young olinguito with its paws and claws flexed.

The olinguito was the first mammal to be discovered in the western hemisphere for 35 years and researchers described it as looking like a cross between a teddy bear and a cat.

Luis Mazariegos
First photo of olinguito cub (Luis Mazariegos)

Olinguitos are found in the cloud forests of Colombia and Ecuador. Adults weigh about 2lbs (900g), have large eyes and woolly orange-brown fur.

SavingSpecies said of the photos: "These are clearly young olinguitos - they are so tiny that they almost fit in the hands of our conservation experts. Note the bright, curious eyes, and nose custom-adapted for snooping out bits of fruit from the forest.

"The photos show off the olinguito's claws, used to traverse the trees of the cloud forests, but also the textured pads on the bottoms to better grip branches."

Mother olinguito photographed in wild (Luis Mazariegos)

SavingSpecies released additional photographs of the species in August after confirming that it lived in the La Mesenia Reserve in Colombia.

The group released what it believed to be the first olinguito cub as well as its mother and a nest.

SavingSpecies said: "The presence of the olinguito - not to mention the olinguito nest - emphasises the importance of the site and our efforts to connect surrounding forest, protect existing habitat and to restore degraded land in the vicinity."

Olinguito species was the first mammal discovered in western hemisphere for 35 years (Mark Gurney)