“The Wild Places” is both an intellectual and a physical journey, and Macfarlane travels in time as well as space. Guided by monks, questers, scientists, philosophers, poets and artists, both living and dead, he explores our changing ideas of the wild. From the cliffs of Cape Wrath, to the holloways of Dorset, the storm-beaches of Norfolk, the saltmarshes and estuaries of Essex, and the moors of Rannoch and the Pennines, his journeys become the conductors of people and cultures, past and present, who have had intense relationships with these places.Certain birds, animals, trees and objects – snow-hares, falcons, beeches, crows, suns, white stones – recur, and as it progresses this densely patterned book begins to bind tighter and tighter. At once a wonder voyage, an adventure story, an exercise in visionary cartography, and a work of natural history, it is written in a style and a form as unusual as the places with which it is concerned. It also tells the story of a friendship, and of a loss. It mixes history, memory and landscape in a strange and beautiful evocation of wildness and its vital importance.
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.
“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.
Following the tracks, holloways, drove-roads and sea paths that form part of a vast ancient network of routes criss-crossing the British Isles and beyond, Robert Macfarlane discovers a lost world – a landscape of the feet and the mind, of pilgrimage and ritual, of stories and ghosts; above all of the places and journeys which inspire and inhabit our imaginations.
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.
William MacGillivray was just 21, on the verge of a career as an outstanding naturalist and bird artist, when he left Aberdeen to spend a year at his childhood home at Northton in Harris. In that year he kept a detailed journal that provides a rare insight into the rural life of 19th century Scotland, especially of the Outer Isles. Running through the journal is his love of natural history. He wrote about the birds and plants he saw and made detailed descriptions of them.