There are few things more frightening than coming to the sudden realization that your property has a rodent problem. Seeing those little tufts of fur shoot across your kitchen floor or pop out of plants when you least expect it makes your heart skip a beat. Most people would immediately dial an exterminator.
However, most people aren’t wildlife photographer Simon Dell. When he noticed a large group of mice lingering around his United Kingdom home, he didn’t call an exterminator. Instead, he did something so unique it had people all over the globe wondering if he’d lost his mind.
Simon Dell is a wildlife photographer who lives in Sheffield, England. Ever since he was young, he loved capturing the beauty of the world through a camera lens, and he has the portfolio to prove it.
The diversity of life on Earth is a never-ending fountain of photographic opportunities, and Simon finds beauty in every species he captures. It’s no surprise that Simon’s two favorite genres of photography are humans and animals.
Although he doesn’t specialize in landscapes and scenery, Simon always has his camera with him and doesn’t miss an opportunity to snag a photo of a serene setting. Nothing, however, prepared Simon for the photographic adventure he eventually took right in his backyard.
As he was leaving his home one afternoon, Simon noticed a small mouse standing right outside his front door. The mouse immediately took off to the backyard where Simon found a large group of them scampering around. Simon, being a man who loved photography, had a wild idea…
He headed to his garage where he had woodcarving tools, and he started to cut, shave, sand before connecting small pieces of wood. Several hours later, Simon presented the mice with something incredible.
He built his tiny new neighbors a small village to welcome them! Most people would have dialed an exterminator, but Simon, who respected all animals no matter how pesky they might seem, wanted his new friends to know they had nothing to fear.
Simon fashioned miniature cottages complete with minuscule human tools, like saws and shovels, to add to the authenticity. He hung drapes on the windows and prepared himself for an adorable photo shoot.
Using some freshly picked berries and nuts, Simon lured the mice into the homes. Once the animals realized he wasn’t trying to harm them, they climbed in and made themselves comfortable. Then, the snapshot frenzy began!
Simon constructed some of the abodes using old fruit to give everything a colorful and natural look. Look at this cute little mouse peeking out from his inviting arch of apples. It looks like he’s patiently waiting for his company to arrive.
He didn’t stop there either! Eager to bring the scenes to life, he added all sorts of minute details, like this tiny “saw” being used to hack into a massive marischino cherry.
There was even a large gourd in Simon’s garage he was able to bore a hole inside to give his furry friends a nifty place to camp out while they watched over his backyard. It almost makes you wish you could shrink down and play in these homes yourself!
Creating such a magical world required a lot of little touches that Simon made himself mostly from plyboard and paint. Luckily, the mice even loved the bits of wood scrap that his project generated.
A small universe was forming. Simon wanted to give his photos a festive theme as well. He dug up his Christmas decor and put them to good use throughout his mouse-tropolis. This adorable little lady can’t wait for Santa Claus to visit!
Look at the festive meal this young chap is about to dig into! He’s got an appetizer plate teeming with gourmet nuts and berries. And for the entrée? Two succulent mealworms. Bon appétit!
Deck the mouse house with boughs of holly! All this little fellow needs to be more in the holiday spirit is a perfectly sized tiny little Santa’s hat, no?
If this lucky mouse ever feels too lazy to forage for food, he literally has to just peek his head out his front door for a sweet snack. Talk about having it made!
Simon’s awesome photo shoot with the mice caught the attention of the town quickly, and the local newspaper came to snap some pictures and chat with him about the creativity behind it all. Simon couldn’t believe his 15 minutes of fame came from his mouse village.
The work with the mice inspired Simon to try out silly photos with other animals. He thought it’d be funny to fill a miniature shopping cart with peanuts and wait for a squirrel to investigate.
Simon also snapped this amusing picture of a bird who looks like they’re standing outside of their home checking on the laundry they just hung out to dry on the clothesline.
Simon Dell had no idea his spur-of-the-moment creativity would land him on the front page of his local newspaper, as well garner attention from all over the world. With a mind as fun and inventive as his, what will he come up with next?