Jim Crumley,Paul Gordon

Days with the Golden Eagle

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Writer and photographer, Seton Gordon, wrote 27 books over a period of several decades and most of these focused on the landscape and wildlife of the Highlands. Of all these books, one of the most acclaimed was Days with the Golden Eagle. Seton Gordon was among the first to observe in some detail – through countless hours in his hide – the daily life of this magnificent bird and to present in his books an account of their habitat, diet and behaviour. But his writing was much more than that – his books are interwoven with acute observation and his narrative possesses a clarity that ensures the reader sees as much as Seton Gordon himself saw. From life day to day on the eyrie, through the different Scottish landscapes and the interaction of the eagles with other wildlife – it is all covered, and all in his inimitable style:

'The eagle as she broods on her eyrie in this country of wild primeval forest has an inspiring view. She looks across to the high tops and sees the early morning sun flood the snowy slopes with rosy light. She hears from the forest below her the soft bubbling notes of the amorous blackcock at their fighting-ground, and the wild clarion call of the missel-thrush as he greets the April dawn. Other sounds she hears: the hoarse bark of a hind, the curious sneezing cry of a capercaillie on some pine tree, the distant melody of curlew and golden plover on the brown moorland, the becking of a cock grouse as he shakes the frosty dew from his plumage. I remember once spending a night beside an eagle at the eyrie and seeing the first sun-flush burn upon her golden head, so that it was no longer golden but deep rose coloured; and so I like to picture that lonely eyrie on many calm, sunny days when spring is young and when all the life of the lonely upland places is commencing slowly to stir to the increasing power of the sun.'
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251 printed pages
Original publication


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