Hoverfly larvae are about as pretty as any other maggot, but grow into important pollinators and members of our ecosystems, as well as accomplished mimics of bees and wasps.
Sphagnum Moss… Builder of the Bog
Sphagnum mosses are plants that you might easily overlook as you squelch through our bogs. They are star players in the creation and persistence of these wetland though, thanks to their ability to retain water. They provide habitats and soil conditions for a wide variety of wildlife and are part of the vital carbon storage system that Irish bogs provide.
Yellow Rattle… a Meadow Builder
Yellow rattle is a pretty but otherwise inconspicuous flower that grows in grasslands. Beneath the soil, it harbours a dark secret however – it is a plant vampire
How to deal with Japanese Knotweed while protecting nature
Japanese knotweed is a tall ornamental shrub with bamboo-like stems and pretty white flowers.
Ireland hosts five species of tern, migratory seabirds which breed on our coasts and inland lakes in the summer months before migrating to warmer climes in the winter. The roseate tern breeds in huge numbers on Rockabill Island, where the colony is vitally important to the species’ European population as a whole. Climate change and invasive species threaten our terns, but work is ongoing to protect them and ensure their breeding success.
The Wood Mouse
Did you know that Ireland is home to several wildlife rodent species including the little wood mouse (Apodemus sylvaticus)? Due to its long tail it is often referred to as the ‘long tail field mouse’ and this is where its Irish name ‘Luch Féir’ comes from. They are on average 8-10cm in length and weigh a tiny 25 grams…that is about 5 sugar cubes!
The wood mouse is often mistaken for the common house mouse, although the wood mouse has some distinguishing features including its large eyes, ears, and a much longer tail.
Garden Birds and how to help them
Cork Nature Network have some great tips on how you can help biodiversity from your own back garden. Never underestimate how much you can contribute with a few simple changes. Today we look at how you can give garden birds a helping hand.
International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer
The ozone layer…you hear about it; you know it is important but how much do you really know about it?
Why Blend in when you were born to stand out? This could be the motto for species which have evolved to be aposematic. Aposematic variation is a term used to describe species which advertise their defence mechanisms to potential predators. This is usually in the form of bold colours and striking patterns making the species highly visible. It could also be a certain noise they make, protruding spikes, odour, bad taste of the organism or even a chemical deterrent. It is basically a warning sign that says, ‘stay away’. These signs, smells and characteristics of the prey make the predator weary, potentially resulting in the predator avoiding the prey altogether.
Rewilding – The Dunsany Nature Reserve
Rewilding is a somewhat radical approach to conservation, which aims to restore natural ecosystem processes by giving nature space to grow and function. It sometimes also involves the reintroduction of key native species which plays a big role in the functioning of the ecosystem, such as large herbivores and carnivores.