Coastwatch director Karin Dubsky with guest speakers Sophie Mjati, of France Nature Environnement, Marc-Philip Buckhout, Seas at Risk policy officer, and  Tatiana Luján, of Client Earth, attending the conference at Trinity College. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Ireland has designated just 2.3 per cent of its vast marine area for special protection, and yet most of its important sea habitats are “in inadequate(...)

The behaviour of raccoons is not that different from that of Ireland’s native pine martens. Illustration: Michael Viney

Last summer, moved by some inscrutable ambition, a raccoon set out to climb the facade of a 25-storey office tower in Minnesota, clawhold by clawhold.(...)

Ireland’s native natterjack toad. Illustration: Michael Viney

An official springtime road sign in Britain carries the burly silhouette of the common toad, Bufo bufo. It warns of a “migratory crossing” for the ani(...)

Gannet birds pluck artificial material from the ocean to build their nests on the Little Skellig colony off the Co Kerry coast. Photograph: Vincent Hyland

There is no “localised solution” to the continuing build-up of plastic materials on one of the Skellig Islands, wildlife officials have said. The Na(...)

The red-billed, exuberantly yelping chough. Happily our choughs compare well with the bird’s severe decline in western Europe. Illustration: Michael Viney

If the Wild Atlantic Way was ever in need of a visual symbol, it would surely be the chough, the crow of joyful aerial gangs, buoyed up in the bounce (...)

RHODODENDRON, ONCE ALMOST ERADICATED FROM KILLARNEY NATIONAL PARK’S FINEST OAK WOODS, HAS RETURNED. THIS VIGOROUS INVASIVE PLANT IS AGAIN THREATENI(...)

A view of a rail line in Co Offaly after the removal of hedges and trees by Irish Rail. Photograph: Pippa Hackett

Irish Rail has rejected claims it had engaged in “wanton hedgerow destruction at the height of the nesting season” by cutting back trees and hedges on(...)

The National Parks and Wildlife Service spearheads a conservation programme aimed at saving the curlew which was once amongst the most common birds in Ireland. Photograph: Joe Shannon

The cry of the curlew could soon be a distant memory for Irish people and as the species continues its precipitous decline its disappearance from the (...)

Pintails, a species of dabbling duck. Photograph: Colum Clarke

The number of waterbirds wintering in Ireland has declined 15 per cent over the past five years and by 40 per cent since the mid-1990s, a study publis(...)

Karol McElhinney, who heads Glenmore Estate, said he did not know how many trees or hedgerows were removed but that any felling of trees and hedging was for ‘maintenance and health and safety’ reasons. Photograph: Malcolm Riddell

An investigation has begun into a large-scale clearance of mature trees and hedgerows at one of the biggest organic farms in Europe, in Co Donegal, af(...)

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