A breathtaking portrait of Russia's remote far eastern forest, and of the world's most extraordinary owl.
'Slaght makes the people, wildlife and landscape of the Russian Far East come alive. I haven't enjoyed a book on remote Russia as much as this since Ian Frazier's Travels in Siberia'
Sophy Roberts, author of The Lost Pianos of Siberia
Primorye, a remote forested region near to where Russia, China and North Korea meet in a tangle of barbed wire, is the only place where brown bears, tigers and leopards co-exist. It is also home to one of nature's rarest birds, the Blakiston's fish owl. A chance encounter with this huge, strange bird was to change wildlife researcher Jonathan C. Slaght's life beyond measure.
This is the story of Slaght's quest to safeguard the elusive owl from extinction. During months-long journeys covering thousands of miles, he has pursued it through its forbidding territory. He has spent time with the Russians who struggle on in the harsh conditions of the taiga forest. And he has observed how Russia's logging interests and evolving fortunes present new threats to the owl's survival. Preserving its habitats will secure the forest for future generations, both animal and human - but can this battle be won? Exhilarating and clear-sighted, Owls of the Eastern Ice is a timely meditation on our relationship with the natural world and on what it means to devote one's career to a single pursuit.
'From the very first pages, Slaght grips readers with vivid language and tight storytelling. The cast of characters he brings to life - both human and avian - illuminate the delicate symbiosis of the natural world and shed a welcome light on the remarkable creatures that are too little known. Top-notch nature writing in service of a magnificent, vulnerable creature." KIRKUS, starred review