A recent post to the Ireland's Wildlife page on Facebook (you can like it here... if you don't already :-) ) reminded me of an encounter I had with what has to be one of our most curious looking groups of insects.It was back in April 2008, when my family and I were spending a weekend in Glengarriff, Co. Cork. We were staying in a cottage right in the middle of Glengarriff … [Read more...] about Look out for: oil beetles
"So that’s what my breath looks like!" exclaimed my young daughter as we walked up to school on a cold and frosty morning. They had been busy breathing in deep lungfuls of the autumn air and watching excitedly as it escaped through their cupped hands. The novelty had long worn off for me and I encouraged them up the road with the promise of one more treat before their school … [Read more...] about Secrets of the Sycamore
I'd like to wish all Ireland's Wildlife readers, partners and associates a very Merry Christmas and look forward to a wonderful and wildlife-full 2014 with you all. 2013 has been a pivotal year for the site -- we've made some great new connections and partnerships, have some fabulous new contributors, reviewed some great products and introduced some exciting new wildlife … [Read more...] about Wishing you a Wild Christmas!
I put together these posters this week as part of the display for our stand at the Birdwatch Ireland West Cork Branch Christmas Fair in Clonakilty this afternoon. We'll be at O'Donovan's Hotel on the main street along with lots of other craft and wildlife stalls, including the Birdwatch Ireland, the IWDG and Cork Whale Watch. If you're in West Cork this afternoon why not call … [Read more...] about New Ireland’s Wildlife Promotional Posters
I'm delighted to be taking part in the upcoming "Blog Tour" to celebrate the launch of the brand new bird field guide the Crossley ID Guide Britain & Ireland. I'll be reviewing a copy of the guide in the Book Review section of the site in due course... but the blog tour is something a bit different.Basically the publisher, Princeton University Press, has teamed up with … [Read more...] about All aboard for the Crossley ID Guide Britain and Ireland Blog Tour
Hanging out washing is an occupational hazards of working from a home office.Working from home invariably means I'm around when the washing machine finishes its spin cycle. And in most Irish households if the weather is dry there's always one overriding imperative: to get the washing hung out as soon as humanly possible!I don't really mind. There's … [Read more...] about Unexpected wildlife hotspot: the washing line!
One of the most appealing things about nature is that you never really know what to expect. Every time you venture outdoors there's a sense of heightened anticipation as you wonder what you might encounter.In Ireland at least that sense of the unknown tends to include the weather. This morning, for example, it was snowing. Snow... and it's nearly April. Nuts! But the cold … [Read more...] about Join us for a spring wildlife extravaganza this April
With Valentine's Day tomorrow here's a little gift for all of you who love Ireland's wonderful wildlife... a special "I ♥ Ireland's Wildlife" wallpaper to dress up your PC desktop / tablet.The wallpaper features an image of a Common Dolphin taken off the coast of West Cork in December last year. To download the full-size image:Right click on the image above Choose … [Read more...] about Love Ireland’s Wildlife? Download Wild Valentine’s Day Wallpaper
When I set up the Ireland's Wildlife Facebook Page in 2009 and launched this website in May 2011, the intention was to create an independent hub for informative and engaging Irish wildlife and nature content on the web. Up until now that has been achieved with no external investment, on a purely voluntary basis with a meagre budget.I'm quite proud of what we've achieved... … [Read more...] about Ireland’s Wildlife — paying its way in 2013
I was hanging out washing yesterday lunchtime when I noticed this rook eyeing up the chimney.We've just lit the wood-burner in the kitchen, and while there was no visible smoke coming out of the chimney, I'm pretty certain there was a steady stream of hot air flowing from it.The rook, which looked wet... as if it had just had a bath (which they tend to do in a nearby … [Read more...] about Blow-dried Crow
An evening walk on the beach is one of the real high points of Autumn. In this part of West Cork we're spoilt for choice with some stunning beaches within striking distance of the house... but more often than not we pick Long Strand at Castlefreke near Clonakilty for an evening stroll along the strand.You never know what you might see: birds, seals, dolphins, porpoises... … [Read more...] about A stroll along the strand
After the traumatic events and harrowing images of the last few days I thought I'd post a few photographs of healthy fin whales (Balaenoptera physalus) off the West Cork coast. This is how they look at their best: … [Read more...] about West Cork fin whales as they should be seen
I've just discovered that the nomination window for Blog Awards Ireland 2012 has been extended to 30 July. While I'm sure that you've all been along and nominated Ireland's Wildlife already, I figured there was no harm in just letting you all know... casual like... that the opportunity is still there.On a more serious note, I started the Ireland's Wildlife page and the … [Read more...] about Shameless plug: nominate Ireland’s Wildlife for Blog Awards!
An evening canoe trip on the Shannon recently turned into a phenomenal wildlife encounter of epic proportions for Sophie Windsor Clive and her paddling partner Liberty Smith. The duo witnessed one of the most awe-inspiring sights Ireland’s wildlife has to offer… and caught it on camera. Some of you may have seen this video featured on social media sites, but it is absolutely … [Read more...] about Murmuration: jaw-dropping video of starlings on the wing
Over on the Ireland’s Wildlife Facebook page people are constantly posting amazing photos of the wildlife they encounter every day. Many of the shots are truly outstanding, but every now and again one crops up that is particularly strange or unusual. Earlier today Barry Ryan posted this picture of a bright blue wasps nest that his dad found in a garden shed in Goatstown, Co. … [Read more...] about Strange but true: bright blue wasp nest found in Dublin shed
I just spotted this shared on the Birdwatch Ireland page on Facebook, and thought that I simply had to share it here. Flocking starlings are amazing enough… but flocking starlings reacting to a peregrine falcon attack… wow! If you don’t already, don’t forget to “Like” Birdwatch Ireland on Facebook and follow @birdwatchie on twitter for great content, bird related discussion … [Read more...] about Peregrine stooping on flock of starlings!
I’m not sure what the collective noun is for a congregation of tits… but a “clamouring” would be a particularly apt one. A mixed flock of the tiny birds descended on a friend’s garden yesterday, causing an almighty commotion in a young ash tree. There were blue tits, great tits, coal tits and several long tailed tits in the mix. They were all jostling for prime spots as they … [Read more...] about Autumn is on the way… no really!
Warning! The wildlife connection in this post may be a bit tenuous… but please bear with me. Sometimes you just need to vent. We’ve had the chickens a couple of months now. Four ex battery hens that, after a rocky start, have settled in to their new life of free-range roaming, and have been laying an average of three eggs a day for the last few weeks. All was well with … [Read more...] about The chicken and the fox: unpredictable nature