First published: 17-Sep-2011
For the first time since May I went to see the red squirrels again. On Friday I quickly filled the peanut feeder and I returned on Saturday morning with the camera and a bag of hazelnuts. I was really looking forward to it, but wasn’t expecting too much, because I thought they would need some time to get used to me again.
Well, I was completely wrong there. I was still walking about scattering hazelnuts when the first one appeared and started searching for the nuts a few meters away from me. Very promising. After I sat down a second one turned up. They seemed to recognise me better than I did them. They must know me otherwise they wouldn’t run up to me, but their tails are all different now, so I'm not sure who is who yet.
It was hilarious how one of them tried to squeeze two hazelnuts into his mouth. He almost fell over pushing one against the other so hard. Of course he did not manage, but he just wouldn’t give up. He even tried to use his tail in the process and when all failed he wanted to walk away with the second nut in between his front paws and the hazelnut in his mouth. Needless to say, that didn’t work either.
This one was braver than any squirrel I have ever encountered in my three years of squirrel watching. When all the hazelnuts had been found and buried somewhere in the forest, he came right up to me climbed over my boot to get to the bag of hazelnuts. He managed to get into the bag and kept coming back. Sometimes standing on my knee looking up at me. It was so funny. By the time the bag was almost finished he almost completely disappeared in it to get to the nuts. I could only watch and laugh, because it was too close by for the lens.
It must have been like hazelnut paradise for him. Next time I’ll have to remember to also bring my wide angle lens. It might not be the most challenging kind of wildlife photography, but it is certainly one of the funniest and most enjoyable.