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Squirrel gives hungry pine marten the slip

This is the hilarious moment a hungry pine martin tries to hunt a squirrel who evades certain death by running around a tree. 

The grey squirrel was halfway up a tree in the Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming when a pine martin attempted to pounce. 

A hunter in the Madison River area of the national park filmed the encounter, which went on for almost half an hour. 

The pine martin chased the squirrel around in circles on the tree in Yellowstone National Park

At one stage the pine martin almost captured the squirrel with the predator changed direction

According to the footage, the pine martin tried to follow the squirrel around the tree, moving up and down the trunk. 

In an effort to bamboozle the squirrel, the pine martin doubled back a couple of times in the hope of having the squirrel run straight into its grasp. 

The unidentified hunter said: 'This video was captured beside the Madison River in Yellowstone National Park. 

'This pine marten, a brown weasel native to Yellowstone, appeared to be hunting the squirrel as the squirrel was simply playing with the marten. 

'The chase went on for nearly 30 minutes but the squirrel eventually escaped.'

The pine martin eventually gave up its chase when it became clear it was not going to catch the squirrel.  

Pine martins are effective predators who are normally between 18 and 26 inches long and weigh between one and three pounds. 

They normally eat small mammals, including squirrels, but will hunt hares, voles, mice and shrews. 

Pine martins have also been known to target birds, eggs, amphibians, reptiles and insects.  

Eventually, the pine martin gave up the chase and left the tree after the squirrel escaped 

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