Purple squirrel is a very rare job candidate or a very rare animal, the former term probably derived from the latter.
Purple Squirrel (Employment Term)
Purple squirrel is a term used by employment recruiters to describe a job candidate with precisely the right education, experience, and qualifications that perfectly fits a job’s multifaceted requirements. In theory, this prized “purple squirrel” could immediately handle all the expansive variety of responsibilities of a job description with no training and would allow businesses to function with fewer workers.
Purple squirrel (Animal)
There are also several recorded cases of actual squirrels with a purple coloration.
- On March 31, 2012, Dale Limburg, a local hunter from Green, Ohio while on a deer hunt in Pennsylvania captured a pristine specimen of a Purple Squirrel  however the squirrel was later released back into the wild to help build the dwindling Purple Squirrel population back up. More theories have been outlined at 
- In 2012, a purple squirrel was sighted and captured in Jersey Shore, Pennsylvania. A news reporter from AccuWeather.com first reported the story on Tuesday, February 7, 2012. The squirrel quickly became an internet sensation, establishing its own social media accounts. The squirrel, which was caught on Feb. 5, 2012, was released back into the wild on Feb. 7, 2012. There are several theories as to what caused the squirrel's strange coloring, including local hydraulic fracking and chewing on pens.
Another account of a purple squirrel (later named Pete) was recorded at the Meoncross School in Stubbington, Hampshire in the U.K. The squirrel is reported to originally be blue, its coat eventually shifting to purple. One theory posited was that since the squirrel had a tendency to prowl a building with old photo copiers, the squirrel simply got into the old toner cartridges. However, most who saw the squirrel firsthand discount this theory.
- "Urban Dictionary". Urban Dictionary. Retrieved 2013-11-17.
- "Bloomberg". Mobile.bloomberg.com. 2012-04-27. Retrieved 2013-11-17.
- Richard Perrin, Real world project management: beyond conventional wisdom, best practices, and project methodologies , John Wiley and Sons, 2008 ISBN 0-470-17079-4 page 215
- Purple Squirrel on CBS http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2010/10/11/purple-squirrels-now-in-demand/
- Mother Nature Network, Purple squirrel captured in Pennsylvania
- NPR, A Purple Squirrel In Pennsylvania Provokes A Host Of Theories
- "No Explanation for Pennsylvania's Purple Squirrel". Accuweather.com. 2012-02-14. Retrieved 2013-11-17.
- "Pete the purple squirrel leaves animal lovers baffled | Mail Online". Dailymail.co.uk. 2008-12-22. Retrieved 2013-11-17.