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British Wildlife is the leading natural history magazine in the UK, providing essential reading for both enthusiast and professional naturalists and wildlife conservationists. Published eight times a year, British Wildlife bridges the gap between popular writing and scientific literature through a combination of long-form articles, regular columns and reports, book reviews and letters.

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Conservation Land Management (CLM) is a quarterly magazine that is widely regarded as essential reading for all who are involved in land management for nature conservation, across the British Isles. CLM includes long-form articles, events listings, publication reviews, new product information and updates, reports of conferences and letters.

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Good Reads  Ornithology  Birds: General

When There Were Birds The Forgotten History of Our Connections

By: Roy Adkins(Author), Lesley Adkins(Author)
504 pages, 16 plates with b/w photos and b/w illustrations
Longlisted for the 2023 SHNH Natural History Book Prize (Thackray Medal).
When There Were Birds
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  • When There Were Birds ISBN: 9781408713570 Hardback Nov 2021 In stock
Price: £24.99
About this book Customer reviews Biography Related titles

About this book

For centuries, birds have been seen as a source of food, feathers and even fuel, and being so numerous, many were persecuted as pests. When There Were Birds is a social history of Britain that charts the complex connections between people and birds, set against a background of changes in the landscape and evolving tastes, beliefs and behaviour. Birds were once key elements of the nation's history, traditions and sports, and this gave rise to a rich legacy of literature, language and myths.

No other group of animals has had such a complex and lengthy relationship with humankind. Birds have been kept in cages as pets, taught to speak and displayed as trophies. More practically, they have been used to tell the time, predict the weather, foretell marriages, provide unlikely cures for ailments, convey messages and warn of poisonous gases.

Although very familiar, birds have often seemed strange, sinister and alarming. With their ability to fly, they bridged the gap between the earth and the heavens, and superstitions were rife because they were presumed to be linked to the supernatural. When There Were Birds draws together many disparate, forgotten strands to present a story that is an intriguing and unexpectedly significant part of our heritage.

Customer Reviews


Lesley Adkins is a historian and archaeologist, author of numerous critically acclaimed non-fiction books on social and naval history, and also on archaeology and the ancient world. Her books (mostly written with her husband Roy Adkins) include Gibraltar: The Greatest Siege in British History, Eavesdropping on Jane Austen's England (called Jane Austen's England in the US), Jack Tar: Life in Nelson's Navy, The War for All the Oceans, Empires of the Plain, and The Keys of Egypt. They have been translated into several languages worldwide. She lives near Exeter in Devon.

By: Roy Adkins(Author), Lesley Adkins(Author)
504 pages, 16 plates with b/w photos and b/w illustrations
Longlisted for the 2023 SHNH Natural History Book Prize (Thackray Medal).
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