Wednesday, 6 June 2018

June 5th Green Drinks - Return of the Wolf?

This month's Green Drinks invited Kilian Murphy, a student of TCD along to talk about the controversial question of whether the wolf could ever return to Ireland. Thanks to rural depopulation and legal protection the wolf has returned to many of its old haunts across Europe, and now every country on Mainland Europe, including Belgium and the Netherlands, is home to wolves. Not everyone is pleased about this of course, and compensation schemes are in place to ensure farmers are not out of pocket when their livestock are taken by wolves. Changes to farming practices, such as better fencing and using sheepdogs can also reduce much of the predation caused by wolves.

Kilian talked about the situation in Ireland and whether the wolf could ever return here. His belief is that conditions are not right at the moment, but there are suitable habitats in remote areas of the west of Ireland where the wolf could return, provided there was a proper management scheme in place. But it won't be happening anytime soon, and a big part of the problem is that people need to be educated about the true nature of wolves. They are not the vicious man eaters of popular myth, but intelligent, social animals that pose no threat to humans.

May 26th Biodiversity Walk on Grand Canal

The Dublin Branch went on a Biodiversity walk on the Grand Canal with Larry Gordon, of the Grand Canal Biodiversity and Cleanup Group  The Grand Canal is a wonderful artery of wildlife from central Ireland right into our capital city, and Larry explained the flow of biodiversity traffic along it. For decades bats, birds, otter and fish have all use the Grand Canal to find food and navigate within our urban landscape. The group have been given charge of a section of the canal to manage it organically for wildlife with the result that it hosts a wide variety of wild plants and flowers. The walk was very successful with about 40 people attending and everyone learned a lot about the beauty and diversity of the canal.