Thursday, January 31st 2013

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Caring For Wild Animals

Please note that many species of mammals, birds, invertebrates etc... are protected under law and that, even with the best of intentions, only someone holding a relevant licence from the National Parks & Wildlife Service should attempt the care of these animals.  For full details, please click here to read the NPWS Checklist of protected & rare species in Ireland.  If you are concerned about a wild animal, please contact your local wildlife ranger - click here for details.

Events & Listings

Click here for a full list of events taking place around the country, and movies currently on release, which might be of interest to wildlife lovers!



Derek Mooney with his unique mix of conversation, information, advice and entertainment

The Irish House Party

The Irish House Party

Derek, Brenda and our audience in Navan are entertained by The Irish House Party: Declan Quinn on flutes and whistles, Gerry Nolan on guitar, Eugene Quinn on banjo, Aedin Martin on harp, and Gary Grant on bodhrán.

The Irish House Party will be performing at the Tivoli Theatre in Dublin throughout February, and they will be touring in the UK in April. Details of all their dates can be found on their website:

Bláthnaid Ní Chofaigh

Bláthnaid Ní Chofaigh

Meath's most famous daughter, Bláthnaid Ní Chofaigh, has been a journalist, a TV host, a Celebrity Bainisteoir, and a judge in The All Ireland Talent Show. These days, she’s an EU Commissioner, no less, in the TG4 series Crisis Eile.

The feisty and fabulous Bláthnaid Ní Chofaigh plays Commissioner Maeve Kelly Clarke, and she joins Derek in Navan today! Crisis Eile is on Wednesdays at 10.30pm on TG4 - for more information about the series, visit


Brian Dunphy, of The High Kings

Brian Dunphy, of The High Kings

Brian Dunphy, son of Sean Dunphy, lives just down the road from our Navan crowd in Ashbourne! Brian has inherited his father's stunning good looks. But not only that, he has inherited the musical genes as well.

Brian is a seriously talented singer. He started his career as lead singer in Riverdance on Broadway in New York City and went on to tour the world as one of the Three Irish Tenors. He was lead vocalist in Radio City Music Hall and sang the American National Anthem at Madison Square Gardens, and he's now with the Irish folk band The High Kings!  He joins Derek for a chat and a tune in Meath today...

Table Topics

Table Topics

A few months ago we got an email into the progamme from Mairead Murphy, who lives in Dunboyne. Mairead introduced us to a really fun competition called "table topics", and the game has given us loads of laughs since then.

The idea is that people are given a random subject for discussion. And they have to talk fluently for exactly 90 seconds, without interruption, without hesitation, and without repetition...

Now, with heroes like Tommy Tiernan and Dylan Moran, Navan people are well-known for their gift of the gab. So today, we'll hear some "world-class blather" from our local contestants, and Mairead Murphy has kindly come in act as a judge for today's competition.

Magic Moment: Paddy Pryle

Magic Moment: Paddy Pryle

Derek is joined in the Solstice Arts Centre by a man who is very active in the local community. We first came across Paddy Pryle on Mooney last April when he came into studio to tell us about a project he was involved in called Navan2Navan. Forty people from Navan, Co Meath were fundraising for a most unusual trip Navan in Ontario, Canada.

Well for organising Navan2Navan, plus over 20 different local community activities, Brenda names Paddy today as recipient of Mooney's Magic Moments, and gives Paddy two return tickets courtesy of Air Canada.

Air Canada operates direct flights from Dublin to Toronto starting on May 19th, with great onward connections across Canada and into the USA. Full details are available from local travel agents or on

It has also teamed up with Aer Lingus to make flying between Ireland and Canada more convenient year-round, with excellent connections available from Dublin, Cork, Belfast & Shannon via London Heathrow en-route to Canada.

Congratulations to Paddy!

Hedgerows: It is an offence to 'cut, grub, burn or otherwise destroy hedgerows on uncultivated land during the nesting season from 1 March to 31 August, subject to certain exceptions'. For more information, click here.

UPDATE: February 29th 2016 - Press Release From BirdWatch Ireland:

Putting the record straight: Dates for burning and hedge-cutting have NOT changed

BirdWatch Ireland, Ireland’s largest conservation charity, is very concerned about misinformation that is currently circulating regarding the dates within which the burning of vegetation and cutting of hedges is permitted.  It would like to remind landowners that all burning and cutting must cease on 29th February this year and that burning and cutting remains prohibited from 1st March to 31st August.

Despite attempts by the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Heather Humphreys T.D., to change the laws regulating these dates by introducing the Heritage Bill 2016 earlier this year, it is important to note that the proposed date changes were ultimately NOT made.  This is because the bill failed to pass through both houses of the Oireachtas before the recent dissolution of the Dáil in advance of the general election.

The laws in place governing the dates for hedge-cutting and upland burning therefore remain unchanged. The period within which cutting and burning is prohibited are set down in Section 40 of the Wildlife Act 1976 (as amended in 2000), which states that:

(a) It shall be an offence for a person to cut, grub, burn or otherwise destroy, during the period beginning on the 1st day of March and ending on the 31st day of August in any year, any vegetation growing on any land not then cultivated.
(b) It shall be an offence for a person to cut, grub, burn or otherwise destroy any vegetation growing in any hedge or ditch during the period mentioned in paragraph (a) of this subsection (above).

The existing law provides exemptions for road safety and other circumstances and should be read carefully to ensure compliance.

Section 40 of the Wildlife Act exists to protect nesting birds. Many of our upland bird species are in decline and are in danger of extinction in Ireland; amongst them is the Curlew, which has declined by 80%. Many birds which nest in hedgerows into August are also in serious decline, including the endangered Yellowhammer. The changes to the cutting and burning dates which had been proposed in the now-defunct Heritage Bill 2016 would have caused serious impacts to these birds. A petition launched by BirdWatch Ireland in conjunction with several other national conservation organisations to stop these changes attracted more than 16,200 signatures and rising.

BirdWatch Ireland would also like to advise members of the public that if they see hedges being cut or fires in the uplands on or after 1st March, such activity could be illegal.  In such cases, we would encourage people to contact the National Parks and Wildlife Service ( to report such activity.

BirdWatch Ireland warmly welcomes the demise of the Heritage Bill 2016 and sincerely hopes that any future administration will consider the importance of Ireland’s natural heritage and will not attempt to reintroduce such a flawed and damaging piece of legislation.

To contact your local wildlife ranger, click here for contact details. To read the Wildlife (Amendment) Act 2000, click here.


Please DO NOT send any live, dead or skeletal remains of any creature whatsoever to Mooney Goes Wild.

If you find an injured animal or bird, please contact the National Parks & Wildlife Service on 1890 20 20 21, or BirdWatch Ireland, on 01 281-9878, or visit


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Presenter: Derek Mooney


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