Hilarious snaps show a greedy dormouse stuck in a bird feeder after crawling in and scoffing so many seeds it became too chubby to squeeze its way out.
Cheryl Hewins, 72, was stunned to find the adventurous creature sitting in her bird feeder.
The ravenous rodent had gnawed its way through so many millet and sunflower seeds his stomach had expanded.
It then became stuck in the contraption for two-and-a-half hours – before Cheryl managed to free him.
So satiated by his food binge, the chunky dormouse was unphased by the birds still pecking away at the seeds around him.
Cheryl sought the advice of Catherine Holder, 34, who runs the Hampshire Dormouse Group Committee who helped her rescue the plump cutie.
Cheryl, retired from a career in banking, from Ventnor, the Isle of Wight, said: "I was surprised to find the thing sitting in my birdfeeder, he must have been there all night and eaten so much he couldn't get out."
National Trust Ranger Catherine, 34, from Romsey, Hampshire, said: "Cheryl was a bit panicked about finding it in her feeder.
"I quite couldn't believe it when I saw the photo.
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"It's nice it was a dormouse because so many times people think they've seen a dormouse and it's not.
"I also just thought it was hilarious. He just sat there like an absolute chunk.
"I got back to her very quickly and confirmed it was a dormouse and told her to take it to the nearest vegetation cover in the garden and try and let him out as soon as possible."
Catherine was certain that the dormouse must have been stuck for quite some time as normally, they scurry away as soon as they are approached.
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Catherine added: "Generally they are not a garden species and if they do come to bird feeders it will be at night.
"It's quite unusual for someone to see them sitting still, blinking at them.
"They hibernate from November to April and they have to properly chunk up.
"I guess he's eaten all the berries and nuts and he found this food source in a bird feeder, got in and started scoffing and couldn't get out.
Cheryl added: "I was surprised to see this chubby dormouse in my bird feeder. I thought: 'Oh my god, what is that?'
"I couldn't see the tail at first, but when I got up close I knew it was a dormouse.
"I spoke to Catherine on Facebook and she told me to take the feeder to a vegetative area and let the dormouse slowly wobble out.
"He eventually toddled off. I'm glad he enjoyed his meal and survived the birds pecking away at him too."
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