By: Arthur Henry Patterson (1857-1935)
Published in 1907 by Arthur Henry Patterson, a self-taught local naturalist, Wild Life on a Norfolk Estuary was one of his defining books on the seasonal nature and natural history of the Norfolk Broads.
The book is presented in two sections - The first part documents life on and around Breydon Water and the Broads throughout each season of the year, whilst the second part is a continuation of a previous AHP book – Notes of an East Coast Naturalist.
AHP’s approachability, enthusiasm and extensive knowledge of the natural history of the Broads region would allow him to develop regular contacts with a wide range of fellow naturalists. One of these in particular was Mary Du Caurroy Russell, Duchess of Bedford , who was herself a keen ornithologist. A lifelong friendship with a mutual interest in the Breydon area of the Broads flourished between them.
AHP authored many books and contributed a vast number of reports and articles to numerous nature societies and journals. Writing under the pseudonym of John Knowlittle, he was for many years, a regular and popular contributor to Norfolk’s Eastern Daily Press.
Today, although the Broads has become a major tourist and holiday destination, nature still thrives as it did in the time of AHP. And without doubt, his observations and studies of the local flora and fauna are as relevant today as they were when he wrote of them more than a century ago. - Summary by TND