Photographer Records Mouse Secretly Tidying Up His Shed

A wildlife photographer set up a night vision camera after he noticed objects in his shed being tidied up overnight — he discovered a mouse was doing the cleaning.

Rodney Holbrook from Wales, U.K., tells the BBC that the tidying has been going on for two months. Infrared footage shows the mouse, which Holbrook has nicknamed Welsh Tidy Mouse, picking up pegs, tubs, cable ties, corks, cups, and bolts and placing them neatly into a tray.

“At first, I noticed that some food that I was putting out for the birds was ending up in some old shoes I was storing in the shed, so I set up a camera,” Holbrook tells Animal News Agency (via BBC).

“Ninety-nine times out of 100 the mouse will tidy up throughout the night. It is incredible really that they put them all back in the box, I think it’s possible that they enjoy it.”

Why is the Mouse Tidying His Shed?

Holbrook, 75, doesn’t believe the mouse is doing chores out of the goodness of his little heart: he suspects the mouse is using the objects to hide nuts. He has even begun experimenting to see what the mouse can lift and place in the box.

“He moved all sorts of things into the box, bits of plastic, nuts and bolts. I don’t bother to tidy up now, as I know he will see to it” he says.

“I leave things out of the box and they put it back in its place by the morning. Nearly all of the time he will tidy up throughout the night. I think he would tidy my wife away if I left her in there.”

Holbrook has a Flickr page where he shares his wildlife photos of birds, insects, and small mammals.

Not the First Time a Mouse Has Been Caught Tidying Up

In 2019, a similar incident occurred in nearby Bristol, England, when a viral video showed a mouse “stockpiling” items in a shed.

Steven Mckears thought he had a poltergeist after screws and metal objects kept being put back in a box. He set up a camera and discovered a mouse was responsible.

Image credits: Video and quotes by Animal News Agency