Probably, no photographer has ever captured harvest mice as perfectly as Dean Mason does. His photos depict the lives of these interestingly cute, little creatures and their adorable mischief.
Even though the lifespan of harvest mouse is just 18 months, its days are filled with adventures.
Being one of the smallest rodents, it’s the only mammal to have a prehensile tail, which enables the little animal to grasp plant stems as it navigates through tall vegetation.
And Dean Mason, a photographer based in Dorset in the UK, has managed to display the adventurous lives of these little creatures to the world through his adorable pics.
The 53-year-old has been a photographer from the age of 17:
“I have been a dedicated to wildlife photography for the past 20 years and enjoyed every single second [of it].”
“Wild animals fascinate me for many reasons: It’s always challenging and I thrive on a challenge. I love the peace and tranquillity of nature and the outdoors, and I have always suffered from anxiety, so having spent 1000s of hours by myself with nature and my camera equipment, I’ve always found it to be therapeutic and calming.”
Mr. Mason added:
“I am the owner of Windows on Wildlife hides and harvest mice photographic workshops in Dorset, UK. I breed captive-bred harvest mice and am fully licensed under the new DEFRA animal welfare legislation to do so.”
“We offer other wildlife photographers the opportunity to photograph our harvest mice under controlled conditions; however, our mice are free to do as they please – they are never handled, so never get stressed.”
“The tiny mice are … natural climbers, so we give them various plants, stems, flowers for them to climb upon which offers opportunities for photographic images.”
Captive-bred harvest mice are used by many preserves for displaying to the public. Their incredibly small size makes spotting them in the wild almost impossible.
“Photographing harvest mice is fascinating. They can be incredibly quick and offer a challenge to photograph.”
“They are incredibly acrobatic and fun to watch, always giving the aww factor! They are never shy to pose for the camera, and this is why hundreds of photographers take the opportunity to visit us on our photography workshops in Dorset.”
Harvest mice are social and live in small, overlapping home territories. During the cooler months, they build a sleeping nest from grasses on the ground or in a shallow burrow if they can’t find a better shelter.
These mice don’t hibernate. They can be active during the day and night.
When escaping enemies, harvest mice move slowly, and make a “camouflage posture” as a defense, and remain motionless against the stalk of the grass. If the danger persists, they drop into the darkness of the ground level.