Mooney/ Mooney Goes Wild

    Monday-Friday, 3 - 4.30pm

    Friday, March 29th 2013

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    On Mooney Goes Wild today...

    We hear about the matchmaking programme for pheasants at Druids Glen, we speak to the DCU student who wants your help in counting foxes in Dublin, and we learn a little about one of the oddest looking fish in the sea - the sawfish!

    Urban Foxes

    In rural settings, foxes are often seen as a menace and they are hunted down. But John Holden contends that city dwellers are much more tolerant of foxes!

    John is a freelance science journalist and a Master’s student of Science Communication at DCU, and he wants your help to conduct a population count of this wily creature in Dublin City!

    He joins Derek and the panel in studio to explain exactly what he's looking for...

    John wants YOUR sightings of foxes in the area of Dublin that stretches from the southside canal to the northside canal. To find out more about the project and to report a sighting, visit www.foxpop.info, the Facebook page, or link up on Twitter.

    Pheasant Matchmaking And Zambian Golf!

    Sometimes boy meets girl, they like the look of each other, and they have a baby. The baby then grows up and looks for a partner to start the next generation - and the cycle continues…

    But sometimes, it’s not that straightforward. Sometimes, the boy or girl needs a helping hand to ‘hook up’

    But there is no Lisdoonvarna for pheasants, so Derek Mulrooney has taken it upon himself to play ‘Matchmaker’ to introduce some wives to suitable Pheasant husbands!

    He is the ‘Honorary Wildlife Conservator’ at Druids Glen Resort in Wicklow.

    And we’ve spoken to him in the past about his Kingfisher project at Druids Glen but today he is here to talk about Pheasant Matchmaking, Bachelor Mute Swans, Curious Antelopes and Zambian Golf!

    Derek doesn't want donations of second-hand golf equipment, but he is looking for someone to sponsor a trip and six sets of new golfclubs for six Zambian boys that they are hoping to bring to Ireland this summer. They will base them and a chaperone in Delgany and bring them to the Golf Union of Ireland Academy in Carton House. This will be done in association with the Zambian Golf Federation.

    Sawfish

    There are some extraordinary-looking creatures in nature, and in particular in our seas. The Giant Squid comes to mind, also the Sea Cucumber, the Blobfish, the Pufferfish, the Frogfish … each is quite unique.

    But there is one sea creature that looks like a household tool….

    Can you guess what it is?

    You may have guessed ‘hammerhead’ shark, and you’d be right… but it is the ‘Sawfish’ we are talking about today! It looks a bit like a ray with a great big nose extension in the shape of a saw with jagged edges.

    The poor old Sawfish is critically endangered now but used to be found in abundance along the West Coast of Africa. And an Irish marine biologist is involved with trying to save the sawfish!

    Her name is Ruth Leeney from Stillorgan and Eanna caught up with her earlier and asked her is there a big difference between a swordfish and a sawfish…

    Hedgerows and the Law

    Hedgerows in Ireland form important features in maintaining wildlife diversity and in establishing wildlife "corridors", particularly for birds. The commonest nesting birds found in hedgerows such as wrens, dunnocks, robin and willow warblers depend entirely on insects during the Summer months. In general untrimmed, thorned hedgerows containing species such as blackthorn, whitethorn and holly are favoured by birds as they provide ample food and also serve as a protection against predators.

    Section 40 of the Wildlife Act, 1976, as amended by Section 46 of the 2000 Act, provides protection for hedgerows by providing that it shall be an offence for a person 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. It is important that, where possible, necessary work to hedgerows is carried out outside this period.

    It is possible in most cases to schedule and carry out necessary work to hedgerows outside this period. The legislation makes provision for works (other than road or other construction works) to be carried out for reasons of public health and safety under the authority of any Minister or a body established by statute that lead to the destruction of vegetation. There is also a provision to enable the Minister for Environment, Heritage and Local Government to request from the relevant Minister or body details of any such works together with a statement of the public health and safety factors involved.

    It shall not be an offence to destroy vegetation in the ordinary course of agriculture or forestry. Also it shall not be illegal to destroy vegetation while preparing or clearing a site for lawful building or construction works.

    It is the policy of the Minister to prosecute for offences under section 40 of the Wildlife Acts 1976 and 2000 and successful prosecutions have been taken under this section in recent years. Members of the public are encouraged to contact their local wildlife ranger and report instances where hedgerows are being destroyed during the prohibited period.

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

    To follow us on Twitter, use the handle @MooneyShow.

    IMPORTANT NOTICE

    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 www.irishwildlifematters.ie

     

    If you require a CD copy of this programme please e-mail tapes@rte.ie or click here for RTÉ Archives sales form. Transfer fees and terms and conditions apply.

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