Rebirding Rewilding Britain and its Birds


Rebirding Rewilding Britain and its Birds Author: Format: Hardback First Published: Published By: Pelagic Publishing Pages: 288 Illustrations and other contents: 16 Plates, color ISBN: 9781784271879 Categories: ,

Rebirding takes the long view of bird and wildlife decline in the UK, from the early taming of the British landscape, fenland drainage and removal of its cornerstone species, such as wild grazers, beavers and boar, to intensification of our modern landscapes, and our vanishing cuckoos. It looks at key reasons why birds are vanishing around us today, as the insect food-chain collapses and many birds are trapped in tiny pockets too small to survive. The authors explore how Britain has, uniquely, relied on modifying farmland, rather than restoring ecosystems, in a failing attempt to halt bird decline. Rebirding maps out how we might finally turn things around, rewilding our national parks, restoring natural ecosystems and allowing our birds, and wildlife, a return to the wild. In doing so, an entire new sector of rural jobs would also be created, finally bringing Britain’s dying rural landscapes back to life – for wildlife and people alike. We are undergoing a mass extinction in our birds and wildlife after over two centuries of intensification. Many books lament the decline of British wildlife – this is the first to map out how this could be entirely turned around, economically and in the national interest. Benedict Macdonald puts forward economic solutions to rewilding our landscapes, creating a future where large, wild areas look after their wildlife. Rebirding advocates for the restoration of true ecosystems, with their original animal stewards, that many other countries, from the USA to Germany and Sweden, already enjoy.

Weight1 kg
Macdonald maps out a fantastic future where our national parks and windswept uplands morph from grouse, deer and sheep nibbled factories into landscapes heaving with life. That there is space in our little island to bring back the ghosts of our past; from lynx to elk to bison. -- Katharine Lowrie * 5000 Mile project * A masterful synthesis on a topical subject .... It contains first of all an excellent historical summary of the evolution of British ecosystems and fauna since the end of the glaciations, full of very specific examples on the evolution of landscapes and their consequences on the avifauna. Frequent comparisons, especially with Eastern Europe, both remind us of the "ecological amnesia" which makes us forget what we have lost and at the same time show us the reasons for that loss..... You may not look at nature the same way again. -- Jean Marc Thiollay * Ornithos * This is the best book on nature, conservation and rewilding I read in 2019 - perhaps one of the best I've ever read. I finished reading it with a real sense of hope for the future. It presents the best argument yet for rewilding before it's too late, and shows us exactly how to do it. -- Alex Roddie * * This book reads nicely and the subject is topical. It presents a good mix of interesting facts and well-explained points of view. -- Walter Belis * Alauda * This is most definitely my book of the year and possibly the whole decade! Regular readers will know I rarely gush and that is usually over the writing skills of authors and not content. This is an unashamed gush for content with an appreciative nod to its very accessible prose and light but deadly serious style. * Fatbirder * Reading this book as both a rewilder and a birder, I expected that an author with a media background would hardly do a good job of rewilding, let alone cover the science of Britain's historic and prehistoric wildlife. But Macdonald's book has really surprised me. I have learned much I did not know about Britain's early bird faunas, and even the history of its mammals. The level of treatment and scholarly references is on a par with conservation science books. .... I thoroughly recommend the book and applaud its breadth and detail. Any birder will gain a good grasp of the rewilding agenda, and any rewilder will find much to learn about birds and their place in wilding schemes. -- Peter Taylor * ECOS * [A] splendid new book... all rational argument seems to be on his side. -- Tim Flannery * Guardian * A visionary yet practical book. -- John Burnside * New Statesman * This is a welcome addition to the growing corpus of literature on a very topical and vital issue. As the catchy title suggests, there is plenty here for those, like me, whose primary passion is for birds, but there is also a wealth of information on rewilding in general, with reference to further reading. The book's primary geographic focus is on Britain, but its well-travelled author draws on experience further afield, too. Ben Macdonald has an impressive track record as a field naturalist, wildlife film-maker and writer, and this passionate, authoritative, up-to-date and, ultimately, optimistic book is a worthy companion to such seminal works as George Monbiot's Feral and Mark Cocker's Our Place. -- Jonathan Elphick * British Wildlife Magazine * With George Monbiot's Feral and Isabella Tree's Wilding providing a look at rewilding from different standpoints... Rebirding sits separate from both and in fact is an essential third book to read if you've enjoyed the others. In short, it's a captivating, fascinating and inspiring read. -- Ed Stubbs * BirdGuides / Birdwatching Magazine * A must read and a good read...the type of book that grabs and keeps my attention. You should read it and I think you may well enjoy it a lot -- Mark Avery * * It is a beautifully written, thoughtful and, yes, provocative book. -- Martin Harper (Conservation Director, RSPB) * RSPB * One of the most revolutionary nature publications in recent times... This is a read you won't regret. -- Gethin Jenkins-Jones * British Trust for Ornithology *

Author Biography

Benedict Macdonald is a conservation writer, field director in wildlife television, and a keen naturalist; passionate about restoring Britain's wildlife, pelicans included, in his lifetime. During his extensive global travel experience, Benedict has found inspiring examples of why desecrating our country's ecosystems is both entirely avoidable and against the national interest. This book is his attempt to ensure that this generation, for the first time in thousands of years, leaves Britain's wildlife better off, not worse, than the generation before - for wildlife and people alike. Benedict is a long-time writer for Birdwatching magazine, as well as a contributor to the RSPB Nature's Home and BBC Wildlife. He has been fortunate to work on TV series for the BBC and Netflix - most notably the grasslands and jungles programmes of Sir David Attenborough's conservation series Our Planet: broadcast worldwide on Netflix in April 2019.