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Conserving Ireland’s Seas: The Marine and Coastal Protection Areas of Ireland initiative

Ireland's Marine and Coastal Protected Areas Initiative

Looking after Ireland’s marine environment should be a massive priority for the Irish government, not just because of EU directives and potential sanctions, or the very obvious benefits to our rich coastal biodiversity, but also for moral, social and economic reasons. Peter Green of the Marine and Coastal Protection Areas of Ireland….

Australia’s “Top End”: a wetland wildlife wonderland

Azure Kingfisher, NT Australia

Awe, tempered with a healthy dose of apprehension. That’s the only way to describe a close encounter with a large saltwater crocodile (Crocodylus porosus). Saltwater or estuarine crocodiles, or plain old “Salties” as they’re called in local vernacular, are the largest reptile species on earth, with males routinely exceeding 4 metres in length, and some specimens reaching….

Competition: Win a pair of Vanguard Endeavor EDII Binoculars

New Vanguard Endeavor EDII binocular

If you’ve seen our recent review of Vanguard’s new flagship Endeavor EDII binocular, you’ll know we were pretty impressed with it. This is an excellent all-round birding and wildlife binocular… and thanks to the folks at Vanguard one lucky Ireland’s Wildlife reader will soon own their very own pair. For your chance to….

Humpback heaven in Kalbarri, Western Australia

Humpback whale Kalbarri

“Get ready to hold on,” skipper Ayden Curic yelled from the bridge as he gunned the engines and the boat surged into the aquatic maelstrom. At the point where Western Australia’s second largest river, the Murchison, collides with the crashing breakers of the Indian ocean sits the quiet little town of….

Vanguard Endeavor EDII 8×42 binocular review

Win a pair of top-quality Vanguard binoculars

Pros: Superb build quality, excellent balance and high quality materials give a premium feel. excellent optics deliver a pin sharp, high contrast image right to the edge of the field. View appears almost flat… with very little field curvature. Good close focus performance. Practically no colour fringing (chromatic aberration). Cons: Focus mechanism a little….

Wildlife watching and travel — back to basics

Using the Vanguard Endeavor EDII

Watching wildlife when travelling can be an exhilarating experience, but it can also be challenging. In this feature IW Founder, Calvin Jones, takes a look at some of those challenges, and how you can overcome them on your next wildlife trip.   For any wildlife enthusiast one of the real highlights of….

Record year for Irish little tern colony

Ireland’s largest little tern colony at Kilcoole, Co. Wicklow, has enjoyed a record year in 2014 according to conservationists monitoring the site. Wardens recorded 120 breeding pairs nesting at Kilcoole this season, smashing the previous record of 106 pairs from 2006. According to figures reported on the Kilcoole Little Tern Conservation blog….

Thrombolites: Lake Clifton’s living fossils

Thrombolites, Lake Clifton

Thrombolites are amazing structures. Along with their close relatives stromatolites, these ancient bacterial colonies are ancestors of the very first life forms to exist on earth, and the hard calcareous deposits created by these colonies are bizarre. It’s actually quite humbling to stand alongside these living relics. These thrombolites are on the….

Koalas: the cute and cuddly face of Aussie wildlife (but only when they’re asleep)

We’d been in Australia for a fortnight. While we’d seen some amazing wildlife, including kangaroos, dolphins and some amazing bird life, the closest we’d come to seeing a koala was the cuddly toys at the local souvenir shop. That’s hardly surprising — because its an east coast species that doesn’t occur in Western….

New humpback whale off Irish south coast

Humpback whale HBIRL29

A new humpback whale for Irish waters has been added to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group’s (IWDG) photo-id catalogue for the species. West Cork whale watching operator Colin Barnes of Cork Whale Watch found the lone humpback during an afternoon whale watching trip out of Reen Pier near Union Hall.  According to….

Minox BL 8×44 HD Binocular Review

Pros: a good looking pair of binoculars with excellent build quality and superb optical performance. Very bright, crystal-clear view with plenty of fine detail, wide field of view with large central sweet spot and minimal edge softening. Good colour and contrast. Very good low-light performance. Cons: accessories could be a bit better. Strap and case perhaps….

Vanguard Endeavor HD 82A Spotting Scope Review

Vanguard Endeavor HD Spotting Scope front view

Pros: Sleek, modern-looking scope that feels solid and well made. Quite compact for an 82mm scope. Very bright, sharp image at 20x magnification that is very good up to about 40x, showing plenty of detail with good colour and contrast. Wide central sweet spot with marginal softening out towards the edge. Dual focus controls….