For the last thirty years John Lister-Kaye has taken the same circular walk from his home deep in a Scottish glen up to a small hill loch. Each day brings a new observation or an unexpected encounter – a fragile spider’s web, an osprey struggling to lift a trout from the water or a woodcock exquisitely camouflaged on her nest – and every day, on his return home, he records his thoughts in a journal.
Drawing on this lifetime of close observation, At The Water’s Edge encourages us to look again at the nature around us, to discover its wildness for ourselves and to respect and protect it.
At The Water’s Edge is a lyrical hymn to the wildlife of Britain, and a powerful warning to respect and protect it.
Excerpt from the book:
I left the dogs curled in their kitchen basket, pulled on my old jacket, my boots, had and gloves, grabbed my binoculars and stick and set out on the circular walk I have done more times than I can count, I turned up the Avenue between the tall trunks of ancient limes and horse chestnuts, kicking the drifts of leaves across the path just for the reassuring swishing sound they make.
My walk takes me gently uphill, northwards with the sun at my back towards high, rocky crags and then round to face the lurching clouds of the Atlantic west by following the Avenue’s parallel lines of lofty trees, precisely planted by Victorian landscape gardeners. Now, more than a century later, in the reassuring way that nature always does in the end, the trees have broken free.
“John Lister-Kaye is one of the most joyful, inspirational naturalists I know. This wonderful collection of wildlife encounters will make anyone want to pull on their boots and rediscover the world on our doorsteps.”
“An intimate book … Lister-Kaye combines a scientist’s pragmatic focus with a poet’s yearning soul”
“Finely crafted … Rising at 2.am to take a summer walk might not be everyone’s glass of malt. But through this gem of a book, at least you’ll discover why such journeys can be so life affirming.”
“a delight …his writing hums with enthusiasm.”
“One of the finest nature writers in the language.”