International support for curlew conservation on lodge bog

Published by Dan Connell on

September 7th, 2017

The Irish Peatland Conservation Council (IPCC) have received international support from Seacology for their efforts to conserve peatland habitat for the breeding Curlew of Lodge Bog.

The distinctive ‘cry’ of the Curlew was once a familiar sound echoing around the Irish countryside during the summer months, but sadly today the Curlew is one of Ireland’s most threatened bird species.

The National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) has reported a 98 per cent decline in Curlew populations since 1980, with less than 125 breeding pairs remaining in Ireland.

The Irish Peatland Conservation Council (IPCC), based at the Bog of Allen Nature Centre in County Kildare, have been monitoring Curlew on Lodge Bog since 2012, with the help of the Kildare Branch of BirdWatch Ireland.

71% of the Irish native Curlew breed on peatlands.  Although the Curlew has returned to Lodge Bog year-on-year, 2017 was the first instance of confirmed breeding of Curlew, and the successful hatching of a live chick.

The Curlew feeds by probing its long, curled beak into the wet peatland pools. As peatland habitats are freshwater, they have the potential to freeze during the winter months.  To ensure they can continue to feed throughout the winter, the Curlew retreats to coastlines, returning to the peatlands around Ireland to breed and rear their young in spring.

Ireland has lost 80 per cent of their peatland habitats and the decline in Curlew populations can be directly linked to habitat fragmentation and even complete loss of breeding habitat due to the exploitation of Irish peatlands.

With this international support from Seacology, the IPCC will continue restoration works on Lodge Bog to ensure suitable habitat for breeding Curlew into the future and raising awareness of the plight of the Curlew in Ireland.

“If we don’t act now the Curlew, an Irish bird, faces extinction by 2025,” Nuala Madigan, IPCC, Education Officer, commented. “IPCC plan to raise the profile of the Curlew throughout the Island of Ireland and do all we can to prevent the extinction of this iconic peatland bird,” she continued.

Seacology is an international organisation committed to protecting island habitats and assisting local communities in their efforts to achieve this.  Since 1991 they have supported 289 projects worldwide and 1.3 million acres of some of the world’s most vulnerable ecosystems.

[x_author title=”About the Author”]

Related Post
Last chance to amend weak climate bill

Friends of the Earth, An Taisce, and Stop Climate Chaos lead the charge to amend the Climate Bill before it Read more

European TV station are looking for Irish people to produce a short video on climate change to air in France and Germany

TV channel ARTE are looking for Irish people to take part in a programme which will air during the COP21 Read more

The Environmental Pillar rejects eco-label given to an Irish salmon farm

The Environmental Pillar wishes to make clear to consumers and public that it rejects the awarding of an environmental certificate Read more

Calls to shorten the hedge cutting and gorse burning ban has no basis in science, say An Taisce

The environmental and heritage group are rejecting calls from the Irish Farming Association to shorten the hedge cutting times. An Read more

Categories: News

Dan Connell

Daniel is a journalist and contributor to Green News, whose focus is on marine conservation and environmental issues. He holds a BSc (Hons) in Marine Science from NUI Galway.