When you’re a squirrel and it’s the dead of winter in Canada, a single peanut is pretty damn valuable.
The series of photos below were taken by photographer Andre Morozov at the Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington, Ontario, Canada. They depict two red squirrels engaged in an epic battle over a tasty peanut atop a tree trunk. It sounds kind of lame, but there’s something about the photos that’s totally awesome. You can imagine just how it went down and it ranks up there with Hollywood’s biggest and baddest fight scenes — I’m talking Neo vs. Agent Smith; Gandalf vs. Balrog; Lee vs. Han.
We’ll take you through the photo essay step by step, but we need to set the mood with some music first:
The battle starts with Squirrel 1 alone atop the tree trunk, with the precious peanut in his grasp. But a challenger approaches: Squirrel 2.
Squirrel 1 charges at Squirrel 2, trying to knock him off the side of the tree trunk before he can climb up top.
Squirrel 1’s defensive maneuver is unsuccessful, and the two lock up and engage in a raucous battle that takes them both perilously close to falling off the edge. The peanut hangs in the balance.
In the end, one of the squirrels (I can’t tell if it’s Squirrel 1 or Squirrel 2) throws the other off the tree using an acrobatic move that wouldn’t look out of place in a pro wrestling ring and lays claim to the precious nut.
“It was amazing to see,” said the photographer. “The pictures are like something from a fight scene in a film. It looks almost rehearsed.”