Representations

owlThe owl of Minerva overlooking wee Jamie Boswell’s brilliant career. National Portrait Gallery of Scotland.foxAt the kirk in Duddingston, Edinburgh.birdsOn the exterior of The Salmon, in Belford. Presumably an earlier incarnation of the inn….crasterIn Craster, under the pall of the smokehouse working on the town’s famous kippers (cf. Salmon Rushdie’s first brush with the things).frogIn Alnmouth.armsSaw this in two different spots and wondered. Turns out to be the symbol of the old Martins Bank, defunct since 1969. 16th century beginnings with London goldsmiths, who banked under the sign of the Grasshopper.The bird is Liverpool’s “Liver Bird,” a cormorant which has been the city’s symbol since at least the 14th C. It joined the Grasshopper after a merger with Bank of Liverpool in 1928. redA Red Squirrel in a mosaic at the National Portrait Gallery. The animal itself, Sciurus vulgaris, is in critical condition in the UK due to the invasive Gray (yes, our familiar North American park inhabitant) and habitat loss. The Grey is not only larger and more aggressive but carries a pox which it is immune to but which horribly disfigures and kills the Red. We saw a Grey in Edinburgh’s Botanic Garden, but no Reds anywhere. The Berwick Red Squirrel Group’s hazelnut-filled boxes were noted in Shiellow Wood south of Fenwick.crimeThere is a war going in the UK between large landowners, their myrmidon gamekeepers, and raptors and their allies. The landowners make money from game-bird hunters, and claim raptors kill too many grouse and pheasant (an introduced species, by the way, which we saw and heard far more times than we saw raptors), so the gamekeepers poison and shoot raptors (all illegal, but money talks loudest of all in Thatcher’s neoliberal encampment). The Hen Harrier in particular is under severe threat from the eradicationists.

3 Responses to “Representations”


  1. 1 Ellen Brys June 27, 2015 at 8:42 am

    I stayed in Alnmouth and did a walking holiday based from there. The Northumberland coast is one of my favorite places! It is so sad about the red squirrels. I know about the reasons for the decline from the greys, but wish there was a way to help bring them back.

  2. 2 Susan June 27, 2015 at 11:11 am

    Thanks for this update. How else would I learn of this?

  3. 3 westerner54 June 27, 2015 at 11:53 am

    Brilliant post: love all these images. Thanks.


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