Rogerstown Estuary: long a hidden jewel. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Rogerstown Estuary was long a hidden jewel of Co Dublin’s coastal scenery and wildlife, overshadowed by the international reputations and exceptional (...)

People march during a Catalan Pro-Independence demonstration. David Ramos/Getty Images

‘Spain without Catalonia would no longer be Spain,” wrote former Spanish prime minister Felipe González in a passionate if blinkered appeal to the (...)

As Irish as a bodhrán: a raised bog. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

More than 500,000 EU citizens, of whom 7,694 are Irish, signed up last month to an online campaign supporting the EU directives on birds and habitats,(...)

‘Seagulls are often extraordinarily beautiful to the human eye, both in flight and up close and personal.’ Photograph: Getty Images

Doesn’t anybody read Jonathan Livingston Seagull any more? The protagonist of Richard Bach’s hugely popular 1970s adult fable was an exquisitely ether(...)

Essaouira, Morocco

Have you ever fallen in love with the Alhambra in Granada, or wandered in awe through Córdoba’s vast mosque? If so, you may have wondered what Euro(...)

‘The Burren Farming for Conservation Programme, which grew out of an EU Life scheme, has several distinctive features well worth emulating elsewhere.’ Photograph: Getty Images

There’s a very common notion, and a distinctly toxic one, that the relationship between farming and nature conservation in Ireland is necessarily a(...)

Pat Donlon,  with her daughter Sinéad Kelly, granddaughter Emma Kelly and Frank Young at  Phelim Donlon’s funeral,  at the Church of St John the Baptist, Blackrock, Dublin. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Phelim Donlon loved this time of year, his wife, Pat, recalled at the end of his funeral Mass in the Church of St John the Baptist, Blackrock, Dubl(...)

Urban flooding: one of the causes is that we have covered huge areas with a hard shell of stone, concrete and asphalt. Photograph: Bryan O’Brien

The metaphors we use so casually in our daily conversations often reveal more than we realise. They also influence how we try to solve problems(...)

A natural: Gordon D’Arcy

‘The one that really fascinated me was the turnstone. It was really cool the way it actually turns stones over, looking for sandhoppers and – what are(...)

Take your pick: the seeds of the cacao fruit, which are made into cocao. Photograph: Yasuyoshi Chiba/AFP/Getty

I’ve been known to grouch that some children today think milk comes from Tetra Paks, not cows. And indeed, the increasing disconnect between urban cul(...)