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.

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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

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Japanese knotweed is a tall ornamental shrub with bamboo-like stems and pretty white flowers.

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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.

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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.

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The Irish Hare by Conor Rowlands

Have you ever been out in the Irish countryside, soaking up the view of the fields, hills, woodlands, maybe a bumbling stream in the background, and SUDDENLY your eye catches an Irish Hare! Over there, running across the field, at full speed, it is huge, you can see the white of its tail!

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