Author(s): Christine Gregory
Brown Hares in the Derbyshire Dales is a written and photographic celebration of one of the Peak District's most secretive and enigmatic animals. Meticulously researched and beautifully illustrated with over 100 colour photographs, this book gives a unique insight into the life, habitat and history of a much loved, yet threatened, species. First published in 2010 to coincide with the International Year of Biodiversity, this new edition - with more than 60 new photos - is intended to raise awareness of the brown hare (Lepus europaeus), which is now extinct in parts of Britain and listed as a priority species in the UK Biodiversity Action Plan. The book is split into two sections; the first describes the brown hare, what differentiates them from rabbits and other hares, their breeding patterns, courtship, boxing, their remarkable speed and agility, their habitat, what they eat, and their history in the UK and the Derbyshire Dales. There are also tips on where and how to see hares in the wild.
The second section, biodiversity, sets the hare in the context of the rapid and extensive loss of their preferred natural habitat, primarily wildflower meadows and traditional grasslands, now almost eradicated by intensive farming systems in some areas. Balanced yet thoughtprovoking reflections on these modern farming methods are supplemented by accounts from local farmers, including Lord Edward Manners of Haddon Hall, interviewed especially for the book by the author. From local author and photographer Christine Gregory, Brown Hares in the Derbyshire Dales is an enlightening and captivating portrait of a beautiful British mammal.
"It features wonderful images of the hares themselves, a testimony to the author's patience, fieldcraft and expertise as a photographer ... Underlying the photography, the text carries a powerful conservation message, emphasising the importance of habitat diversity, for the hares and for the rest of the associated wildlife." (Dr Derek Yalden, Mammal News ). "Christine Gregory's book is a worthy addition to the tradition of natural history writing. It is scientifically accurate, well-written and a homage to an animal Christine is clearly fond of. " (Jim Dixon, Chief Executive, Peak District National Park Authority). "A neat balance of factual information and romantic musings, accompanied by some great photography." (Country Walking Magazine).
Christine Gregory is a writer, photographer and painter. Having taught social and political studies in adult and community education for over 20 years, she went on to teach radio skills and print journalism in further education. She has made community-based radio programmes for BBC Radio Sheffield and features for BBC Radio 4, although now concentrates full time on writing, painting and photography. She lives in the Derbyshire Dales of the Peak District where she has been following, studying and photographing brown hares in their natural habitat for several years. This book, Brown Hares in the Derbyshire Dales, first published in 2010, is the result of a life-long love of the countryside and a personal concern for the environment.