Part one, 'The Horsey Story' tells the story of cranes at Horsey in John’s words, as told to Chris. Much of this draws on John’s memories and the many and detailed notebooks that John kept.
Added to these are the diaries, reports and recollections of others, such as Peter Allard, Mike Everett and several crane wardens.
Right: it's 1979 and three cranes arrive at Horsey
The year by year accounts include elements of the story that are linked to that year. More general notes on behaviour and related subjects are in part two.
Part two, Cranes: History, Observations and Management includes a history of cranes in the UK, how ‘Crane Country’ was shaped, and information on land management as it affects crane habitats for breeding and feeding. Observations on their behaviour at Horsey show the time and energy that John Buxton and his team of wardens have dedicated to cranes. The difficulty of access into fens and the birds’ secretive and sensitive nature make the observations made at Horsey especially valuable. We hope these will prove useful to land managers elsewhere in the UK as crane numbers increase.
Nests at Horsey are often in a small pool in the reedbed
Though this book is primarily about Norfolk’s cranes, the common crane is the most widely distributed of the 15 crane species.
In part three, Cranes in Europe, Nick Upton describes the challenges facing cranes in the rest of Europe, charting their recent rise in numbers that has contributed to their reappearance in the UK.