Prince Charles is nuts about squirrels!
That was made abundantly clear by his first-born son, with Prince William telling U.K. magazine Country Life about his dad’s extreme affection for the furry-tailed rodents.
Speaking with the mag, reports People, the Duke of Cambridge revealed that Charles, who turns 70 on Wednesday, is prone to carry nuts in his pockets to feed squirrels he encounters at his Scottish estate.
“He is completely infatuated by the red squirrels that live around the [Birkhall] estate in Scotland — to the extent that he’s given them names and is allowing them into the house!” William dished in the special issue of Country Life, which the Prince of Wales guest-edited in honour of his 70th.
Charles is not only on a first-name basis with his furry friends, he is also patron of the Red Squirrel Survival Trust, an organization founded to raise awareness of the species’ drastically dwindling numbers. It declares on its website that without action the red squirrel will be extinct in England within a decade.
Speaking with Country Life, Charles shared fond memories of the squirrels. “They come into the house at Birkhall and we get them chasing each other round and round inside,” Charles explained. “If I sit there quietly, they will do so around me. Sometimes, when I leave my jackets on a chair with nuts in the pockets, I see them with their tails sticking out, as they hunt for nuts — they are incredibly special creatures.”
Charles’ fondness for squirrels is nothing new. In a clip from the 2015 BBC documentary “The Passionate Prince”, he can be seen marvelling at a squirrel on his windowsill.
“So funny, these creatures, they really do make me laugh,” Charles says in the clip. “They’re very naughty. It’s like people collecting strawberries or raspberries. They always stop to have one or two.” Watch: