This is a book in which the author looks beyond the perception that Surrey is an overcrowded county with little space for birdlife. He reveals an attractive county of compact and contrasting landscapes governed by abrupt variations in the underlying geology.
There is a corresponding and impressive diversity of birdlife, across a biological recording area that stretches from South London and the Thames to the Weald. The inclusion of Spelthorne in modern Surrey provides additional reservoir groups with their associated waterfowl.
The time perspectives are long, tracing the history of the birds and their landscapes back through the recorded history, archaeology, fossils and geology of the land that is or has been Surrey.
During the writing of this book the re-colonisation of England by Buzzards has accelerated and they have returned to breed in Surrey, often at former sites. Other large birds of prey are now increasingly being seen and the return of species such as the majestic Red Kite brings colour to Surrey skies.
The book includes:
*A systematic list and species accounts. (This is the core of the avifauna and is both full and authoritative with the added dimension of an historical background.)
*Breeding distribution maps.
*Analysis of breeding surveys.
*Charts and histograms.
*Ground and aerial photographs.
*Vignettes, paintings and line drawings.
About the author:
Jeffery Wheatley is the County Recorder of Surrey Bird Club and his published work includes the Surrey section of the series "Where to Watch Birds". He brings the same readable style to this major work which benefits from the consistency of a one-writer approach.
&i;'Each species account is written with authority and the level of detail presented reflects the terrific amount of work put in by the author'&o;
- Mike Toms, (BTO News January-February 2008, Issue 274).