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Forres man John Beats captures stunning squirrel pictures in Kintessack


By Jonathan Clark

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A FORRES man has captured these stunning pictures of a family of squirrels visiting his back garden in Kintessack.

John Beats, who has been living in Kintessack at his daughter's house since lockdown began, crafted the feeding stations himself.

And within minutes of putting each one up he has seen a family of squirrels enjoying them.

The train was the first feeding station John created. Picture: John Beats
The train was the first feeding station John created. Picture: John Beats
John then made this tank - which the squirrels enjoyed two at a time. Picture: John Beats
John then made this tank - which the squirrels enjoyed two at a time. Picture: John Beats
John's most recent creation is this plane, which the squirrels have enjoyed flying around in. Picture: John Beats
John's most recent creation is this plane, which the squirrels have enjoyed flying around in. Picture: John Beats

Creating the feeding stations has been keeping John, who is a fabricator by trade but works part-time at Murdoch's Butchers, entertained since lockdown began.

He said: "I made the first one in March – it gives me something to do while we can't go out.

"It's a weekend job for each one. I made them by chopping up and shaping pallet boards.

"I made the train to start with and I had to guess the size of the squirrel – they are a lot smaller than you would think and you have got to make it so you can see the squirrel when you put the food in.

"The train gave me a guide for the tank, I made the turret and left the back open for the squirrel. My wife Andrea suggested the plane so that was the most recent one I made.

"The squirrels are quite nosey and were in each one within half an hour of me putting them up."

A squirrel at its dinner table. Picture: John Beats
A squirrel at its dinner table. Picture: John Beats

The squirrels regularly come back to the garden, with John seeing them a couple of times each day.

He added: "They are there every single day.

"They come in the morning at about 6am, two young ones and their mother, probably come again through the day while I'm at work and then they are back at 6pm or 7pm.

"I put out different kinds of nuts and apples for them to eat."

The animals are now getting used to John, he added, and are only frightened by sudden movements.

All of the pictures were captured with a Nikon D4S camera.

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