Calstock Arts are thrilled to welcome local farmer-turned-ecologist Derek Gow to speak about his new book and his experience of rewilding.
Tearing down fences literally and metaphorically, Birds, Beasts and Bedlam recounts the adventures of Britain’s most colourful rewilder, Derek Gow. How he raised a sofa-loving wild boar piglet, transported a raging bison bull across the UK, got bitten by a Scottish wildcat and restored the ancient white stork to the Knepp Estate with Charlie Burrell and Isabella Tree.
After a Shetland ewe captured a young Derek’s heart, he grew up to become a farmer with a passion for ancient breeds. But when he realised how many of our species were close to extinction, even on his own land, he tore up his traditional Devon farm and transformed it into a rewilding haven for beavers, water voles, lynx, wildcats, harvest mice and more.
Birds, Beasts and Bedlam is the story of a rewilding maverick and his single-minded mission to save our wildlife.
‘Derek’s passion for our native wildlife is matched by his highly pragmatic approach to helping it thrive. He gets stuff done. The story of his amazing work at Broadwoodwidger is highly entertaining but also a heartfelt plea for a wilder, more inspiring Britain.’—Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall
‘Derek Gow’s riotous adventures rescuing threatened species and releasing them for rewilding read like Gerald Durrell on steroids. Courageous, visionary, funny and always up for a scrap with bureaucracy and complacency, the world needs many more Derek Gows.’—Isabella Tree, author of Wilding
‘A brilliant read – and the entertaining backstory of a species of human megafauna who has transformed the British conservation scene.’—Benedict Macdonald, author of Rebirding (winner, 2020 Wainwright Conservation Prize)
‘A do-er, not a dreamer, Gow has become one of our most outspoken rewilders.’ Countryfile Magazine
‘In this warm and funny autobiography, [Gow] writes with a whimsical fluency about the moments of humour and pathos in an unusual life.’ Country Life
Further information on Derek’s books below –