SMALL, swift and deeply secretive, stoats and weasels are hard to spot in the wild. But a North Yorkshire wildlife artist has made it his mission to research these little-known mammals for a new exhibition.

Robert E Fuller has devoted the last five years to the intensive study of miniature mustelids living in his garden, getting to know by sight six generations of the same stoat family.

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On June 15, he reveals a new collection of paintings inspired by his findings at an exhibition at his gallery in Thixendale, North Yorkshire.

The event precedes the release of a TV documentary filmed in the artist’s garden forming as part of the next BBC Natural World series.

Mr Fuller said: “I paint in a realistic style to capture the individual characters of my wild subjects and for this I need to understand them thoroughly. When I discovered a family of stoats in my garden it was the ideal opportunity to watch and learn about them.”

‘Wild About Stoats & Weasels: An Artist’s Perspective’ runs at The Robert Fuller Gallery in Thixendale from June 15 to July 6. Admission is free and the gallery is open weekdays from 9.30am to 4.30pm and from 10.30am to 4.30pm on weekends.