A VIDEO showing a week in the life of a tree stump is taking off on social media.

The short video was uploaded by Thixendale artist and Gazette & Herald columnist Robert E Fuller, who expected it to interest a handful of nature enthusiasts.

But within a day it had garnered over 500 shares and 1.5k likes on Twitter as well as a large following on Facebook, Youtube and Instagram.

"I couldn’t believe it would interest so many people," said Mr Fuller, who uses nest cameras hidden in his garden to follow the secret lives of the creatures that live there for his paintings. "I’ve titled the video 'The Tree of Life'."

Viewers commented how encouraging it is to witness so much biodiversity.

The clip opens with a tawny owl which appears to have claimed the hollowed elm for a home, but then a kestrel is captured - also inspecting the tree stump's nesting possibilities.

This visit is followed by that of a stoat - looking for food - then a grey squirrel, climbing ungracefully into the chamber.

Meanwhile a tree creeper and a blue tit pick off insects at the entrance to the hollow elm and, at the end, a barn owl lays claim to the popular spot.

Robert Fuller, who is currently exhibiting a new collection of paintings of wildlife in winter at his gallery in Thixendale, will be holding a talk about how he translates his video footage into detailed paintings.

The talk and slideshow takes place at his gallery at 7.30pm on November 18.

Tickets are £12. To book visit robertefuller.com or call 01759 368355.