An undertow of this animal life-loving adventure is hunger. We must be one of the few species having a significant segment of its global population not living with hunger as a daily driving urge. ‘Food chain’ takes on new meaning as Williamson portrays the cascade of species eating other species, up close and painfully personal.
‘Running along the bank of a ditch beside the path, the fitches had met at the mouth of a drainpipe, out of which strayed a hunger-making smell.’
Source: Henry Williamson, Tarka the Otter: His joyful water-life and death in the two rivers, illus. C.F. Tunnicliffe (Harmondsworth: Puffin Books, 1976 (1927)), p. 57