The Full Story
In 2022 I set forth on a project to create 100 needle felted Seagulls, along the way I learned many things I'd never realised about gulls, I developed a greater respect for this misunderstood family of birds and amassed a library of images of the gulls I created. The book was born from this, both the desire to learn more about these amazing birds and to showcase the fantastic images I had created during the project.
Did you know that there is no such thing as a seagull?
Flock focusses on the six most common gulls native to the British Isles as well as other British seabirds of note. In this book I dive into a world of complex relationships, amazing behaviours and habits an habitats of these missunderstood birds
The first thing I noticed was that it's a really satisfying little object in its own right - crisp clean design, lovely smooth cover and surprisingly heavy for something so small. Flock starts by introducing us to gulls as a group of seabirds, all with their own unique place in the world. The author shares some personal anecdotes about her own encounters with our feathered friends (or foes, depending on your experiences) and how a needle felting project turned into fascination and respect.
Each of our native gulls gets a generous feature with brilliantly composed and amusing photographs of her felted sculptures demonstrating common behaviours. With details of the birds physical characteristics, calls, nesting habits and preferred habitat, it works well as a spotters guide on family outings.
I discovered some interesting things I didn't know before, despite having lived on the coast for many years in Cornwall and Whitby - so it's an informative as well as entertaining read.
Gulls are of course one of several families of seabirds, and the book introduces a number of other charismatic species you might also encounter at the seaside.
Much of the stigma surrounding gulls in popular tourist spots is of course partly due to often well-meaning humans feeding the opportunistic herring gulls. In the final section, Melanie addresses this and other issues facing our native gulls and other wildlife, with some useful tips on how you can help.