A classic and vivid overview of the history and culture of St Kilda up to the time of the evacuation in 1930. Includes detailed treatment of the population and families, their homes, shielings, bothies and storehouses, domestic life, pastoral and arable farming, fowling and fishing, customs and beliefs, stories and songs, religion, education and health, and communications. 338pp hardback, including many diagrams and illustrations.
240 x 162 mm 352pp 32 b/w plates ISBN: 978 1 899272 03 7
A vast canon of literature has been produced over the years on St Kilda, most of which has focussed on the resilient people who have lived there, but before now none have focussed on the natural history of the island, nor has such a book been written by a native resident.
In 1697 Martin Martin, a Gaelic-speaking scholar from Skye, travelled to St Kilda to study the island’s flora and fauna and to learn about the now extinct great auk. Much of the information that he gathered during this expedition was relayed to him by the islanders. Naturalists from Martin down to Robert Atkinson in 1938, not only witnessed the people’s way of life but also the wildlife around them, both priceless assets that have recently won for St Kilda dual World Heritage Site status.
A Natural History of St Kilda is a synthesis of what these naturalists and scientists experienced and gives evidence that shows just how important wildlife was to the survival of the islanders. Much of this information has lain for years in little known private diaries, files, reports or obscure scientific journals. John Love puts background and personalities to the names whilst describing the natural features of the islands of St Kilda, creating a fascinating and insightful account which will appeal not only to naturalists, but to all who are fascinated by the St Kilda, by its human history and by islands in general. Its remoteness and inaccessibility are notorious but one need not have set foot on St Kilda to enjoy this book.
ISBN-10: 1841587974 ISBN-13: 978-1841587974
An ideal pocket guide to over 350 plant species found throughout Scotland Packed full of information, Collins Scottish Wild Flowers is the ideal guide for both visitors and residents of Scotland who wish to learn about the fascinating wealth of wild flowers that can be found there. Each species is illustrated in full colour with a comprehensive description, plus the plant’s English, Latin and Gaelic names. For ease of use, the plants are grouped together by the type of habitat in which they can be found, including Highlands, Lowlands and Coasts. Habitats are arranged from those most influenced by humans, progressing towards wilder and more remote areas. The book includes a section with up-to-date details about places of interest and the best sites for finding some of the most attractive and special species of wild flowers in Scotland.
With informative and lively text this colourful booklet which has been written by Paul Kirkland, Director of Butterfly Conservation Scotland, introduces the fascinating life-cycles of butterflies, where you can find them and what we need to do to care for them. It also contains some of the most wonderful butterfly images ever to be published.
Produced jointly with Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), this shy, secretive bird is seldom seen but often heard. Its distinctive, rasping call evokes memories of a more rural past. Thanks to the efforts of the Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and RSPB, numbers of this threatened bird are again on the increase.
This book introduces the flowers and trees that grow in Scotland. Find out, season by season, how to identify common Scottish plants, their habitats, uses, folklore and history. Find out about Scottish plant collectors — intrepid explorers who had many exciting adventures plant hunting in the far-flung corners of the world. Many of the common plants growing in Scottish gardens today were introduced by them.
Flora Celtica: Plants and People in Scotland documents the continuously evolving relationship between the Scots and their environment from the Stone Age to the present day. Based on a mixture of detailed research and information provided by the public, it explores the remarkable diversity of ways that native plants have been, and continue to be, used in Scotland. The information is presented in clear and accessible format and is laced with quotations, illustrations, case studies and practical tips.
This volume covers the complete spectrum of plant uses, addressing their diverse roles in our diet, healthcare, culture, housing, language, environment, crafts, and much more. It is a book to delight, inspire and inform.
A practical beginner’s guide to identifying birds. For the beginner, it can be hard to distinguish a crow from a rook, a raven and a jackdaw. How to Identify Birds uses a sophisticated new method to help you do just that. You learn to distinguish 30 key species and from there are taken to similar birds, taught exactly how you can spot the more subtle differences between species and to identify them accurately. Each entry includes: Numerous, specially-commissioned illustrations to show their behaviour and plumages / Scientific factfile to double-up as a useful reference / Distribution map and advice to suggest where you are most likely to find that species / Detailed, accurate illustrations show birds as you will see them in the wild.
An essential introduction to this hidden kingdom. Discover the variety of plants and animals which live in the ‘forests’, find out why kelp forests are so important in Scottish waters and how healthy kelp forests help to prevent coastal erosion.
This book is for those who are interested in the natural world and who wish to develop a good knowledge about the original formation of the formidable Scottish terrain. It is accessible and beautifully presented, contains a vast amount of detailed information told in clear, comprehensible language and is enhanced throughout with specially commissioned illustrations, diagrams and photographs.
Unlike many field guides, Collins Scottish Birds does not cover birds which only visit occasionally, or which occur in such small numbers and are so difficult to identify that only experienced birdwatchers can spot them. Instead, it concentrates on more common species that the amateur birdwatcher is most likely to see, plus a few scarcer ones of particular interest. Species are grouped according to the habitat in which they are most likely to be seen, with a detailed introduction to all the different habitats. There are also details of key identification features and behavioural characteristics which will help you identify each bird with accuracy and ease. Each entry includes a full-colour illustration, common name and Latin and Gaelic name, the season in which the bird is likely to be spotted, and details on habitat, feeding habits, and voice. The book also includes up-to-date details about places of interest and the best sites to go for birdwatching, with maps and contact information to help you get there. Packed full of information, Collins Scottish Birds is the ideal guide for both visitors and residents of Scotland who wish to learn about the fascinating wealth of birds that can be found there.
Climate change is one of the most serious issues that faces the human race, but how important have climate conditions and weather been in the past? Alistair Dawson considers this question as he traces the history of climate conditions and weather in Scotland, showing that dramatic changes have played an important part in the shaping of Scotland’s story, a fact that is often overlooked by professional historians.
He discusses the key lessons to be learned from the past, providing pointers to the future and new meanings to the terms ‘climate change’ and ‘global warming’. This is a fascinating and thoughtful book, and an invaluable reference for all those interested in climate change.
“Seaweed And Eat It” is the foodie’s answer to “The Dangerous Book for Boys”, and a nostalgic journey of rediscovery for the whole family. Part cookbook, part natural history guide, with tasty recipes, fascinating folklore and inspiring ideas for seasonal feasts, “Seaweed” leads the reader through the process of identifying, learning about and cooking unusual and wild native foods. From discovering edible wild plants and flowers, to creating delicious seasonal feasts, “Seaweed” puts the fun into foraging and injects a sense of adventure into preparing dinner. For anyone interested in the origins of their food – or who’s shocked by the price of elderflower cordial – this inspirational cookbook will ensure mealtimes are never dull.
A Description of the Western Islands of Scotland Circa 1695 and a Late Voyage to St Kilda: Description of the Occidental i.e. Western Islands of Scotland
One of the greatest travellers in Scotland, Martin Martin was also a native Gaelic speaker. This text offers his narrative of his journey around the Western Isles, and a mine of information on custom, tradition and life. Martin Martin’s wrote before the Jacobite rebellions changed the way of life of the Highlander irrevocably. The volume includes the earliest account of St Kilda, first published in 1697 and Sir Donald Monro, High Dean of the Isles, account written in 1549 which presents a record of a pastoral visit to islands still coping with the aftermath of the fall of the Lords of the Isles.