Incredible photo: Weasel flying on a woodpecker's back

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Tuesday, March 3, 2015
An amateur photographer captured this stunning image of a weasel riding on a woodpecker's back.
Martin Le-May

This is easily the most incredible photograph you'll see all day.

A recent image captured by amateur U.K. photographer Martin Le-May shows a baby weasel riding on the back of a woodpecker in flight. Le-May said that he took the picture while walking with his wife Ann through Hornchurch Country Park in London on Monday.

"As we walked we heard a distressed squawking and I saw that flash of green. So hurriedly I pointed out to Ann the bird and it settled into the grass behind a couple of silver birch trees," Le-May told ABC News.

"Both of us trained our binoculars and it occured that the woodpecker was unnaturally hopping about like it was treading on a hot surface. Lots of wing flapping showing that gloriously yellow/white colour interspersed with the flash of red head feathers. Just after I switched from my binoculars to my camera the bird flew across us and slightly in our direction; suddenly it was obvious it had a small mammal on its back and this was a struggle for life."

But although things looked grim for the woodpecker, Le-May says that it managed to survive.

"The woodpecker landed in front of us and I feared the worst. I guess though our presence, maybe 25 metres away, momentarily distracted the weasel," Le-May told ABC News. "The woodpecker seized the opportunity and flew up and away into some bushes away to our left. Quickly the bird gathered its self respect and flew up into the trees and away from our sight."

"The woodpecker left with its life, the weasel just disappeared into the long grass, hungry."

The image quickly went viral after being tweeted by U.K. bird and nature photographer Jason Ward, and alsoafter being posted to Reddit.

After the photo went viral, many on the internet added their own funny spin to the #WeaselPecker picture.