An award-winning photographer has captured a group of squirrels playing with pumpkins ahead of Halloween.

The images, taken by wildlife photographer Geert Weggen, show the red squirrels poking their heads inside carved pumpkins.

In one image, two squirrels are shown climbing onto a pumpkin while in another it looks as if they are taking turns to peek inside.

Weggen is famed for his photographs of squirrels, having published several books to showcase his best shots of the furry creatures.

“Almost every picture I take is telling a story,” he said. “So like with Halloween, I can imagine them as dancing skeletons.”

Weggen went onto explain that he occasionally has difficulty with the squirrels he photographs.“They bite me sometimes,” he said before clarifying that the animals have never hurt him. 

“They recognize that when they bite me I’m not a nut. They’re very smart in that way.”Weggen lives in central Sweden and has won several awards for his wildlife photography.

Talking about how he captures his images of the animals, Weggen explained it often requires a great deal of patience.

I cannot tame a wild squirrel. They do exactly what they want,” he said. “I can wait a very long time for my shot.” Occasionally, it helps to entice the squirrels with food. “I know they’re always searching for food, so I might hang a little bucket with seeds in the air. If I want them to pick up a pencil, I spread a little peanut butter on it.”

Most of the time, squirrels are thought of as nice and gentle and loving. But they can also be a little dark,” Weggen continued. “They can be very aggressive. This Halloween is a spooky time for people so I thought it was fun to show a little bit of the more evil side of squirrels.”

Weggen added the squirrels will sometimes bite him, but they soon recognize that he isn’t a nut, so the bites don’t bleed. “They’re very smart in that way,” he pointed out.

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