‘Nature writing’

With so much talk about ‘the new nature writing’, I wanted to refresh my acquaintance with nature writing from the 20th century and earlier. I opened five books from my shelves at random pages, and with each of them found something satisfying first time – so satisfying that I’d like to share the excerpts with you. Some are not so new – Richard Mabey is often regarded as the father of the new nature writers (Oliver Rackham was born in the previous generation, and was an academic botanist as well as a writer, so seems to me to predate the new wave.) In the case of Gilbert White, I chose a page at random from the ebook online.