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Wild Opinion

Seagulls ate my aunty’s dog! Really?

Anyone with an ounce of sense will instantly see the headline above for what it is: sensationalist, ill-informed clap-trap. Nonetheless headlines just like it have been rife across Irish media following calls for a cull of the birds by Senator Denis O’Donovan in the Seanad earlier this week. Here are just some of the questionable headlines, introducing equally incredulous editorial from ostensibly “respectable” Irish….

Raptors in the firing line on national radio show

A social media storm is brewing surrounding an ill-informed and disturbingly inaccurate radio interview about birds conducted on the Pat Kenny Show on national Irish radio station Newstalk FM yesterday (Wed 14 January). On the show, host Pat Kenny (pictured left) introduced Biochemistry Professor, Luke O’Niell (yes, you read that right — a professor of….

“Open Season” on hen harrier: Cllr. John Sheahan’s response

hen harrier

Last night I penned this email to Cllr. John Sheahan, Cathaoirleach of Limerick County Council, in response to his outrageous call for an “Open Season” on hen harriers in the county. This morning I received an email with the following standard letter attached, clarifying Cllr. Sheahan’s position: Reply to “OPEN SEASON” remark….

Email to Cllr. John Sheahan re. “Open Season” on Hen Harriers statement

Open season on Hen Harrier in the Limerick leader

I’m at a loss to understand what Cllr. John Sheahan could have been thinking when he made his “Open Season” on hen harriers statement (as reported in the Limerick Leader and outlined on this site here). I felt compelled (along with many other people I’m sure) to write to Cllr…..

Irish farmers, you need representatives with more “cop on”!

Young white-tailed eagle

Irish farmers are intelligent people… and many of the farmers I meet on a day-to-day basis have at least some understanding of the wildlife they share their land with. I live in a farming community, and much of the wildlife I encounter every day is living on in and around farmland…..

Natural born scapegoats…why do we always blame wildlife?

Why is it that we’re so ready to lay the blame at nature’s door when things go awry in the countryside? There are plenty of examples out there. Bovine TB is perhaps the biggest that springs to mind at the moment. It’s a dreadful disease in cattle that has serious….

Give weeds a break in your garden

All over Ireland gardeners are on a mission to eradicate weeds… but is there a different approach that can help the gardener AND help Ireland’s wildlfie? **** Weeds! The very mention of them can send gardeners into spasm. Throughout summer well into autumn we fight a never-ending battle with weeds…..

Baltimore whale stranding: a good news story?

Padraig Whooley of the IWDG offering interpretation of the whale stranding in Baltimore

I was getting settled at my desk yesterday morning, pondering what to write for my Irish Independent wildlife column, when the phone beeped. It was a message from Padraig Whooley, sightings coordinator with the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group, telling me that a suspected fin whale had live-stranded in Baltimore,….

Ireland’s nature and biodiversity featuring invasive alien

Earlier today the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) launched the fifth of their four-yearly State of the Environment reports “Ireland’s Environment 2012: An Assessment”. I read the press release, scanned through the main points with interest, and went straight for my main area of interest, Chapter 6, Nature and Biodiversity… I….