The Meaning of Geese

Nick Acheson


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Chelsea Green Publishing UK
9 February 2023
ISBN: 9781915294098
240 pages

From the publisher

'A magisterial diary for bird lovers.' Observer 'Reading The Meaning of Geese may inspire you [to descend on north Norfolk this winter yourself].' Rated 4 stars by The Telegraph 'The Meaning of Geese is an intimate study of the intriguing lives of these under-appreciated birds, as well as a window into the inner workings of a naturalist's obsession.' Lee Schofield, author of Wild Fell 'Honest, human and heart-grabbing. I loved this book so much.' Sophie Pavelle, author of Forget Me Not As seen on BBC Winterwatch 2023 The Meaning of Geese is the story of Nick Acheson's love for the land in which he was born and raised and for the wild geese that fill it with sound and spectacle every winter. During a time when many of us faced the prospect of little work or human contact, renowned naturalist Nick Acheson found a sense of peace and purpose in his pursuit of the wild geese that filled the Norfolk skies on their seasonal visits from Iceland and Siberia. In The Meaning of Geese Nick recounts these adventures, starting with the dramatic arrival of the pinkfeet and brent geese as they land in the thousands in Britain each autumn. Over seven months he cycles 1,200 miles - the exact length of the pinkfeet's migration to Iceland, while encountering rarer geese, including Russian white-fronts, barnacle geese and an extremely unusual grey-bellied brant, a bird he had dreamt of seeing since thumbing his mother's copy of Peter Scott's field guide as a child. Nick keeps a diary of his sightings as well as the stories he discovers through the community of people, past and present, who love the geese and are working to protect their future.