Mooney Wednesday January 22nd 2014

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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!

On Mooney today...

On Mooney today...

Je Ne Regrette Rien - singer Jeannette Byrne celebrates the life and music of French chanteuse Edith Piaf. Vet Andrew Byrne answers your pet questions. Brenda meets a couple who have been able to secure their home through renovating it, with help from Habitat For Humanity. And three players attempt to beat the clock, and each other, to win a weekend hotel break in Mooney's Wednesday Quiz!

Caring For Garden Birds This Winter

Caring For Garden Birds This Winter

To find out how to care for and attract garden birds, read Jim Wilson's Guide To Garden Birds - CLICK HERE!

The Blind Boys Of Alabama Competition

Calling all Irish gospel choirs/groups!

Would you like to perform in the National Concert Hall as support act for gospel legends The Blind Boys of Alabama as well as on RTÉ Radio 1’s Mooney?

Mooney and Waltons World Masters Series are offering one lucky group the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to do just that!

The Waltons World Masters Series welcomes The Blind Boys of Alabama back to Dublin and the National Concert Hall on Wednesday, May 21st 2014. Ireland has its own great tradition of gospel music, and one very special aspect of this concert is that the support act will be an Irish gospel choir/group selected by the third nationwide Waltons World Masters Gospel Competition, in association with the Mooney and RTÉ Radio 1! The winning choir/group will perform a 40-minute set before The Blind Boys take to the stage.


All Irish gospel choirs/groups are welcome to enter.

The Competition

After all entries are received, a shortlist of three finalists will be chosen by a jury made up of representatives from Waltons New School of Music and RTÉ Radio 1. The finalists will be announced and their recordings broadcast on the Mooney on Thursday, April 10th. Their entries will then be sent to The Blind Boys of Alabama, who will select the overall winner.

The winning choir/group will be announced on the Mooney on Thursday, May 1st, perform on Mooney on a date to be announced, and perform in the National Concert Hall as support act for the Blind Boys of Alabama on Wednesday, May 21st.

The winning choir/group will be responsible for their own transport to/from the venue, as well as accommodation (if required). The group will receive five pairs of tickets to the concert for guests, but there will be no monetary remuneration.


Entry forms are available at or by clicking here. E-mail or post forms with the required information and materials (e-mail preferred!) to: (with ‘Waltons World Masters Gospel Competition’ in the subject line)


Waltons World Masters Gospel Competition
Waltons New School of Music
69 South Great George’s Street, Dublin 2

Entries must arrive by 5pm on Friday, March. Late entries will not be accepted.

Please include the following materials and information:

  • Good quality audio recording(s) and MPG4, MOV, AVI or WMV video files or CD and DVD of one or two pieces that best display the range and skills of your choir/group.
  • A list of proposed repertoire to be performed at the NCH if your choir/group is chosen to perform.
  • A brief description your choir/group, including history, number of members and names, musical background of members and instrumentation (if any).
  • A JPG photograph of the choir for the Mooney Show and Competition web pages. If possible, please include a live performance photograph as well.
  • Website, Facebook or other URL(s), if any.
  • Email and contact details of the choir/group director.
  • Confirmation that all performers who feature on the audio and video files are available and will be able to perform on Wednesday, 21 May in the National Concert Hall, if your choir/group is selected.

Important Dates

Entry deadline: Friday, March 21st, 5pm
Finalists announced: Thursday, April 10th
Winner announced: Thursday, 1 May
Concert: Wednesday, 21 May

Pet Queries With Vet Andrew Byrne

Pet Queries With Vet Andrew Byrne

In the papers this morning, there was a warning of a mystery dog disease that is killing dogs in the UK. Dogs start to form lesions on their legs, they then get kidney failure and they die. 16 dogs so far have died in the UK. Click here to read the full article.

Vet Andrew Byrne, from BrayVet, is here with us today to talk pet pain and older people & pets...

Edith Piaf - No Regrets

That's the unmistakable Edith Piaf, with one of her best-known songs, La Vie En Rose.

She really did lead an extraordinary life, Edith Piaf. And if you've seen the movie of the same title La Vie En Rose, you’ll have some idea of the tragedy and heartbreak which dominated that life.

October 13th 2013 year marked 50 years since the death of Edith Piaf. But in the intervening half-century, it's difficult to think of any singer, male or female, who captured the same level of raw emotion in their recordings as this diminutive French chanteuse.

Well Edith Piaf creates new fans every decade, and one of them is Irishwoman Jeannette Byrne. Jeannette has very strong French connections, and she's taking to the stage later this week with a new production - a tribute to France's greatest singer.

No Regrets will tour nationwide from this Friday:

Friday, January 24th: The Abbey Tavern Howth: full band
Saturday, January 25th: The Mermaid Arts Centre, Bray, Co Wicklow: full band
Saturday, February 15th: The Set Theatre, Kilkenny
Friday, February 28th: Roisin Dubh, Galway: full band

And Jeanette also has a monthly residency in Dublin:

Monthly Residency @ Chancery Lane Theatre, Chancery Lane, Dublin 8

  •         Saturday 18 January 2014
  •         Saturday 08 February 2014
  •         Saturday 22 March 2014

Mooney's Wednesday Quiz

It's Mooney, it’s Wednesday ... so it must be time for our Mooney’s Wednesday Quiz! And we have a seriously GREAT prize up for grabs today...

The Flynn Hotel Group January Room Sale starts on January 17th and for just seven days you can pick up a fantastic deal in any of the four Flynn Hotels on a wide selection of dates from now to June 2014.

Rooms at The Newpark Hotel, Kilkenny, The Imperial, Cork, The Park Dungarvan and the Old Ground in Ennis will be on sale from just €69 per night for two people sharing including full Irish Breakfast and late check in or check out. The sale is on for a limited time only so log on to from January 17th to bag yourself a bargain get away!

So to banish the January Blues, we're one listener the chance to win a two night, weekend break away with breakfast on both mornings and dinner on one evening for two people in any of the four Flynn hotels. You win, you choose!

The Old Ground Hotel in Ennis

You can choose from The Newpark in Kilkenny, The Imperial in Cork, The Park in Dungarvan or the Old Ground in Ennis.

So if that sounds like something you’d like to win...

... we are looking for three contestants to take part in our Quiz today.

To enter just text your name to 51551 or e-mail

The quiz will take place just after 4 o’clock today.

You must be over 18 to claim the prize but under 18’s can play on your behalf.

Habitat For Humanity

Last week, in Upper Sherrard Street in Dublin, the Rahman family were presented with keys to their new three-bed home by the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Oisín Quinn.

The family, originally from Bangladesh, have being working with a group called Habitat for Humanity Ireland and they help low income families get their own home.

The house was previously a derelict Dublin City council house, and was the scene of anti-social behaviour. Habitat for Humanity Ireland, along with a group of volunteers, and the family themselves, renovated the house. The family are paying a small mortgage on the home and will come off the growing Dublin City Council housing list.

Brenda chats to Vinnie Cunningham, Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity Ireland with David Shiels, Site Supervisor for Habitat for Humanity Ireland looking on

Brenda chats to Vinnie Cunningham, Executive Director of Habitat for Humanity Ireland

Habitat for Humanity Ireland fundraises to send volunteers overseas to build homes in partnership with local families and are also involved with a local renovation programme in Dublin which partners with Dublin City Council to increase access to housing for low income families and vulnerable people.

Brenda visited the house and met the new proud homeowners MD and Helena Rahman, and also Vinnie Cunningham, the Executive Director for Habitat for Humanity Ireland.

Helena Rahman (Habitat Homeowner) with her niece and Brenda Donohue

Colm O’Sullivan, Vinnie Cunningham, Brenda Donohue, MD Rahman, Helena Rahman, Meem, David Shiels

Colm O’Sullivan, Brenda Donohue, MD and Helena Rahman, David Shiels, Vinnie Cunningham

Habitat for Humanity Ireland are starting to renovate another derelict home two doors up from this house, and are presently appealing for potential homeowners to apply for this opportunity. In order to be considered you must be on the Dublin City Council waiting list, so if you are, then visit

Habitat For Humanity's previous renovation project on Emmet Road, Inchicore:

Before the renovation

After the renovation

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


***Download the Dawn Chorus 2017 podcasts***

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Presenter: Derek Mooney


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