Kai Fagerstrom 14

Image source: Kai Fagerström

While visiting his family’s summer house in rural Suomusjärvi, Finland, property manager and amateur photographer, Kai Fagerström, stumbled upon a small collection of abandoned homes whose residents had either passed on or relocated.

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Peering through broken windows and door holes, Fagerström discovered tracks from mice, badgers and other wild animals who had since sought shelter in the abandoned houses after their original residents left, reports National Geographic.

With a nearly 15-year interest in photographing deserted homes, Fagerström was intrigued by the prospect of taking photos of these animals within their adopted dwellings.

“There’s consolation in the idea that nature is reclaiming the places it has lent to people,” said Fagerström to National Geographic.

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His stunning images showcase scenes from four to five different houses with various animal visitors coming and going at different times.

Since the animals proved difficult to photograph (except for the squirrel, Fagerström notes), he had to place some food out to entice them to return indoors. Once they slowly reappeared, he photographed them from the outside looking in, when a soft darkness blanketed the landscape.

It took Fagerström a while to complete his project but he never minded nor gave up.

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“The journey is more important than the destination,” says Fagerström.

See where Fagerström’s journey took him with a slideshow of his collection “The House in the Woods.” Click the arrow to begin.