I found myself in a landscape still held in the tail end of winter. The birch, previously aflame with the colours of their autumn leaves, showed their exposed skeletons of deep chestnut branches…
Outside, the large, circular bird-feeder hanging on a branch of the bare hawthorn tree is aflitter with birds: blue tits, great tits, dunnock, sparrows, robins, wrens, even a great spotted woodpecker zooms in for a spell.
What does it take to make a native plant or animal or fungus abandon its companionable habits to carve a path of destruction across the landscape?
Over the past few years, I have been looking into the complexities of this debate and I can tell you only one thing with confidence: it’s a huge, vigorous muddle.