The Secret Life of the Mountain Hare
ANDY HOWARD, SANDSTONE PRESS, £24.99
Not so much a monograph as an illustrated love-letter to the charismatic upland lagomorph, this slender but intimate tome is a passport to an austerely beautiful world. Photographer Andy Howard’s gorgeous images invite you to traverse a land of heather-purpled moors and stark, snowy mountains inhabited by eagles, pine martens, foxes and – naturally – hares in their various moods, postures and seasonal costumes.
Blending memoir, photographic manual, field guide and conservation manifesto, The Secret Life tells the story of Andy’s relationship with mountain hares in the Cairngorms and Monadhliath hills of the Scottish Highlands, from his first attempt to capture a cowering individual on Slochd to his new life as a tour-leader. En route he provides an involving overview of the species’ ecology, covering breeding and reproduction, predators and persecution on driven grouse moors, along with that famously morphing pelage. Paul Bloomfield Freelance writer
Mountain hare fur morphs three times a year: white to brown in spring; brown to grey in autumn; grey to white in winter.