This award-winning wildlife photographer has spent years gaining the trust of his local squirrels…
so he can take adorably candid photos of the critters doing everything from sword fighting and smelling flowers to playing chess.
Geert Weggen, who has lived in his mountainous Swedish home for eight years, has used food and treats in order to develop a close bond of friendship with the red squirrels in the surrounding wilderness.
To capture his stunning photos, Geert built an outdoor studio entirely out of wood, plants and trees on the balcony outside of his kitchen.
He then lured the squirrels into the studio by leaving trails of nuts and acorns for them to eat.
“I create scenes with small props and toys in which I hides nuts to attract the squirrels,” says Geert. “I then wait, often for hours, for the squirrels to find the hidden nuts and for the right moment to take my photos.”
During his most recent shoot, Geert used peanut butter in order to entice the squirrels into interacting with his props.
Some of the squirrels are very curious and don’t shy away from human interaction,” he added. “Sometimes they crawl on me and even enter my home, but mostly they tend to congregate wherever there are nuts.”
Since Geerten began photographing his bushy-tailed friend six years ago, his work has been featured in newspapers, books, calendars, magazines, radio and television.