Many turf-cutters have now stopped cutting, or relocated their cutting to an unprotected bog. Photograph: Eric Luke

The now perennial summer bother on Ireland’s raised bogs between turf-cutters and conservationists, which has flared up again in east Galway and Rosco(...)

In 2011 a violent rain storm caused landslips that buried the main street and piazza of Vernazza (above) and killed three people. Photograph: IStockphoto

Lugging buckets of soil and rocks up a steep, unstable slope, early on a damp morning, or weeding an olive grove in the midday Mediterranean sun, prob(...)

Native place: Gleninchaquin, on the Beara peninsula, in Co Kerry

‘Y out can’t eat scenery,” Donal Corkery likes to say, although he has a sharp eye for the great beauty of his native place, the glaciated valley o(...)

Aerial existence: swifts eat, mate and even sleep on the wing. Photograph: Willi Rolfes/Picture Press/Getty

Swifts are a bit of a mystery. Many accounts of their behaviour are still prefaced by the phrase “very little is known . . .”.These birds eat, mate an(...)

Life Lives on the Edge: Brian Rickwood, Jim Hurley and Will Warham keep an eye on uncut hedgerows in Co Wexford. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

A friend who now lives in Los Angeles fondly remembers early summer in Ireland as the time “when the roadsides look as if they have been draped in lac(...)

Sea change: Louise Firth experimented on the Mutton Island causeway. Photograph: Joe O’Shaughnessy

The world is changing faster than most of us realise. Humanity has been altering shorelines for a very long time, since the construction of the(...)

Overbrowsing: we have introduced new species of deer to our native red and naturalised fallow deer, such as the herd in the Phoenix Park, Dublin. Photograph: David Sleator

The price of ecological knowledge in our time, wrote the American environmentalist Aldo Leopold, is the constant awareness that we are living i(...)

Zootopia: Stephen Butler, the zoo’s curator of horticulture, with a camas – and giraffes. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill/The Irish Times

Dublin Zoo is bursting with new and varied life, and much of it is outside the animal enclosures, especially if you have the right person to po(...)

Rewetting: blocking part of the 60km of drains on Abbeyleix Bog, which allows the bog to re-form rapidly

Some conflicts, it is good to remember, do get resolved. Early one morning in 2000, Bord na Móna workers tried to start cutting turf on Abbeyle(...)

Native tree species are being re-established through impressive restoration programmes undertaken by the National Parks and Wildlife Service, by Coillte, and by NGOs such as Woodlands of Ireland

How long, the American farmer-poet Wendell Berry asked, does it take to make the woods? As long, he answered himself, as it takes to mak(...)

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