Wild Wings to the Northlands. By S. Bayliss Smith. Witherby, London, 1970. 208 pages; 24 black-and-white photographs. £1.50. Anyone might be forgiven for thinking, on brief acquaintance, that this is just another birdwatcher's travelogue full of sentimental reminiscences and not even blessed with a crop of really good photographs to relieve the tedium. In fact there is more to it than that, although the photographs do come as a disappointment to those of us privileged to have attended one of the author's superbly illustrated lectures. This is an account of the fulfilment of Mr Bayliss Smith's longcherished hope that one year he would be able to set out from the Camargue in early April and head northwards, looking in on as many bird reserves as possible on the way and finally arriving at the tundra of arctic Norway some ten weeks later. He successfully conveys the impression of travelling with the migrants at about their own rate of progress and investigating their likely resting places, while commenting on the kind of treatment they might receive as they pass through each country. So the journey starts in an area where the pressures exerted by Man are already great, but finishes in an unspoilt wilderness where Man, as yet, has scarcely left his mark. Along the route, and here a map would have been useful, the birds have to run the gauntlet of many kinds of threat. The French shore shooters, we are told, still have a free-for-all from 1st to 15
Volume: 
Issue 3
Authors: 
Cramp, S
Sellar, P. J
Cramp, S
Sellar, P. J

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