High above the mountaintops on the Isle of Mull, Scotland, a huge bird is soaring. Its all-encompassing gaze records people in its Hebridean territory far below, but they are of no interest. The eagle is about its business: concentrating on the deer and fidgety hares out grazing in the morning sun, the urgent push of thermals beneath its wings, a threatening weather front way out at sea, and the restless chick back in its eyrie. This is Mull in its glory. This is what the excited, watching people have travelled so far to witness. They train their binoculars and admire, perhaps envy, the eagle with its vast freedom, knowing that such a self-willed being is part of another world – almost.
Wild Mull guides the reader through that world. With superb illustrations and illuminating text, we are led to the wild side of Mull. Every facet of the island's natural history is considered, its diverse species and many stories – past, present and future. Along the way we are reminded that wildness is not somehow separate from the human world but influenced, and shared, by nature and people together.
Here is the tale of a precious and unique place, a seaborne landscape that displays an uncommon biodiversity and rare wildlife experiences, although today it also faces its greatest challenges. Most of all, Wild Mull is testimony to the power of wild places and the duty we have to learn from and protect them.
After ‘discovering’ nature on forays among the fields and dykes of Romney Marsh, Kent, an academic career focused on supporting sustainable communities and promoting thriving green environments throughout the UK and Europe, Stephen Littlewood is now resident on the Isle of Mull and continues to be surprised and delighted by all things wild.
Martin Jones is an award-winning photographer. His interest in wildlife photography led him to the Isle of Mull, beginning a love affair with the island, where he retired with his wife, Stella. Their interest in biodiversity resulted in a huge catalogue of photographs of Mull's unique scenery, fauna, flora and fungi.
"Mull is indisputably one of the most wonderful areas in Britain for wildlife. Here at last is a book worthy of the place. Stephen Littlewood's authoritative text and Martin Jones' beautiful images will make any Mull visit deeper, richer and much more rewarding."
– Mark Cocker, author and naturalist
"This is the book I wish I had in my pocket as I explored this rich, varied, and magical island as a boy. The perfect guide to this perfect place."
– Gordon Buchanan, wildlife filmmaker and presenter