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Short-eared Owls (cover)

Publisher: Self-published

Publication Year: 2021

Binding: Hardback

Page Count: 432

ISBN Number: 9781838480004

Price: £ 35.00

Short-eared Owls

This book is a remarkable achievement. It describes one man’s study of Short-eared Owls over 10 years across different parts of Britain. While the main strengths of the book are those personal observations supported by a collection of stunning photographs (again the work of one man), Bryan Benn has put these into context in a series of carefully thought out chapters. Subjects covered include appearance, habitats, behaviour (including breeding, hunting and social), movements, voice and conservation. While some observations are placed successfully into context, only a limited amount of literature appears to have been reviewed. As a result this is not a definitive monograph but as Short-eared Owls remain poorly understood, it is a valuable source of information. I will certainly be using it repeatedly. It is even more remarkable when you consider this is the result of one man’s work, not just the observations and photographs but notably the determination to write and self-publish what is a very attractive book. Not only a valuable addition to information about a poorly understood species, this book also demonstrates many things that others could aspire to – tenacity to study a bird, meticulous recording of observations and determination to make it all accessible.

The book is available from the cafe at Elmley NNR at £30 per copy to visitors, or £35 plus P&P for online sales. 

Book reviewed by John Calladine

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