Saturday, March 31, 2012

Shooting squirrels (but not with a gun!)

squirrel collage

My poor husband! When he suggested a holiday to the Maldives after his return from Afghanistan, I told him that no, I'd much rather go to Nova Scotia... in low season. Likewise when he proposed a spa day as a Valentines gift, I said I'd rather spend a morning photographing squirrels in the Cairngorm mountains. I like to think I'm different, but sometimes I think he thinks I'm just difficult. Tropical beaches and massages are what we are supposed to like surely? But after 5 years of marriage he should know that the problem is, I can't do sitting still very well!

Red squirrels in the Cairngorns 1
Red squirrels in the Cairngorns 2

So he conceeded and last week I had my Valentines treat - a morning spent with another man... and lots of squirrels - Ha!

I think like most people I can count the number of times I have seen a red squirrel on one hand, and it's always been at a distance, but all that changed last week...

Red squirrels in the Cairngorns 7

Scottish wildlife photographer Neil McIntryre has created a spot in the woods near his home that the squirrels now recognise as a feeding station and he offers people the chance to spend a morning photographing them under his tuition. I have to say that after 4 and a half months being pretty tied to the house, even the opportunity to spend a couple of hours in the woods in the sunshine and peace and quiet, was a real treat!

A lovely spring morning spent photographing red squirrels in the Cairngorms...

The squirrels weren't tame, but were confident enough to come closer than normal, and there was nothing to scare them off. Neil also does a full day wildlife photography workshop, and I'm quite tempted to go back and continue building my photograph collection. The variation of wildlife in our part of the world is quite wonderful.


  1. these are wonderful... can see why this was your choice xx

  2. Those photos are beautiful! I especially like the large photo in the top display, it's framed very well. Your squirrels are different than ours, especially those furry ears. If you're looking for any little nature walks in the city while your here in NS, Point Pleasant Park is practically right downtown Halifax, and Shubie park is in Dartmouth.

  3. Oh my these are soooo cute I'm sending your link to my daughter.

  4. oh they are wonderful photos and beautiful creatures.

  5. I have never seen a red squirrel in "real life". I really envy you. Your photographs are amazing. You are really talented.

  6. Brilliant choice and photos...pffft ..what do husbands know! Bless em.

  7. I've never seen a squirrel like this before, and LOVE the hairdo!! I'm glad you got a chance to get away, and as always, I enjoy your pictures!!

  8. Great squirrel photos, you can even see those blades of grass. I think you should let him spoil you a little though!

  9. Excellent photo's. Mr Squirrel seems to be looking straight down the lens!

  10. Terrific photos of the squirrels. I too would pick Nova Scotia over the Maldives though I have not been to either place.


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