Olan McGowan with his unique mix of conversation, information, advice and entertainment
Photographer Mark Carmody unveils his secrets to capturing great shots of wild birds. We find out what to do about foxes that are creating a nuisance close to your home. And we hear why the humble wren is still the King of Irish birds!
Ahead of the National Dawn Chorus, which takes place in the early hours of Sunday, May 18th, Olan McGowan presents this easy audio guide to identifying the birdsong of fifteen Irish birds. To download the file, click on the 'Listen' button to the right, and in the box that pops up, click on 'Download'.
2. Song Thrush
Above: Song Thrush
3. Mistle Thrush
Above: Mistle Thrush
8. Blue Tit
Above: Blue Tit
9. Great Tit
Above: Great Tit
12. Collared Dove
Above: Collared Dove
14. Willow Warbler
Above: Willow Warbler
We now know that the humble wren really is the King of the Birds here in Ireland, thanks to the latest BirdWatch Ireland annual Countryside Bird Survey. And joining Olan in studio this afternoon to talk about the wren and Countryside Bird Survey, the impacts of afforestation on birds and a vulture killing drug, is Niall Hatch, Development Officer with BirdWatch Ireland.
The top 20 most numerous birds in Ireland are:
Wren - 6,237,680
Swallow - 5,863,920
Robin - 5,460,320
Blackbird - 4,917,410
Chaffinch - 4,214,060
Rook - 3,751,300
Jackdaw - 2,806,560
Starling - 2,716,030
Woodpigeon - 2,645,400
House Sparrow - 2,418,810
Blue Tit - 2,294,930
Dunnock - 1,760,290
Meadow Pipit - 1,719,240
Willow Warbler - 1,665,140
Great Tit - 1,377,130
Song Thrush - 956,440
Coal Tit - 925,390
Goldfinch - 916,540
Greenfinch - 830,110
Magpie - 755,520
Click here to read BirdWatch Ireland's Guide to Ireland's Birds.
During the week, we received this e-mail from listener Mike Smith:
I think you and your team will be interested in seeing some pictures of a wrens nest built in my back shed in Cloone, Co Leitrim. Quite unusual I would say. Its build on top of a swallows nest. The swallows return to the nest each year so I wonder will they be happy with the squatters when they visit this year.
Just opposite this there is a blackbird sitting on eggs just above the door header and just outside the door there is a grey wagtails nest in a hole in the wall where they have youngsters at the moment. So a busy bird life around us at the moment.
Love listening to your program when I can. Keep up the good work.
UCC and BirdWatch Ireland are also currently involved in a project to assess the effects of forest expansion on bird diversity in vulnerable habitats in Ireland - and they are looking for YOUR help!
They would like you, our listeners, to take a few minutes to respond to a survey about the perception of forests in Ireland. This survey explores public opinion regarding the importance of forests economically, recreationally, culturally and environmentally and aims to identify recent land-use change. The survey will take between 5 and 10 minutes to complete. Click here to complete the UCC Survey On Afforestation.
Olan McGowan chats to Eanna ni Lamhna, Niall Hatch and Terry Flanagan about the ways in which we can identify the most popular birds in the Dawn Chorus...
National Dawn Chorus Day will take part on Sunday, May 18th 2014. If you are part of a group who will be taking part in a Dawn Chorus event in your local area, and want to register your event with us, please send full details - name, contact number, what will be happening and where, to firstname.lastname@example.org, with the subject line 'Dawn Chorus 2014'. And who knows, we may contact you during our Dawn Chorus broadcast!
Where will you be on National Dawn Chorus Day?
For more information on the various events that BirdWatch Ireland will be hosting as part of Dawn Chorus Day, click here.
Mooney Tunes is back! Tickets for Mooney Tunes 10 will go on sale THIS MONDAY from 3pm!
Can you believe it? It's Mooney Tunes time again, and astonishingly, we are approaching our tenth concert! It all started in September 2009, at the National Concert Hall. The very first Mooney Tunes featured music such as Send In The Clowns, The Anvil Chorus and even the theme from Hawaii Five-O. Over the last nine concerts, there hasn't been any genre of music we haven't covered. We've done a lot of classical favourites, we've had arias and choruses from some of the greatest operas ever written.
In the last concert, Mooney Tunes 9 in December last year, we did some incredible jazz, like Jack L singing My Way, and the big band orchestra performing Sing Sing Sing by Benny Goodman. We've had pop, traditional Irish, even country music - Daniel O'Donnell went down a treat at Mooney Tunes 7!
All in all, over the nine concerts so far, we have brought you a total of 152 pieces of music. They were performed by some of the cream of Irish and international talent, accompanied by the RTÉ Concert Orchestra.
Everybody from sopranos Cara O'Sullivan and Claudia Boyle, tenor Paul Potts, baritone John Molloy have performed. We've had Brian Kennedy, Jerry Fish, Chloe Agnew, John Sheehan from the Dubliners. We also did a special Eurovision tribute, with Niamh Kavanagh, Linda Martin, Paul Harrington and Charlie McGettigan.
Anyway, the good news is, we want to bring you another gem of a show. And, since it's our 10th concert, we've decided to a kind of "best of".
We would like you, our listeners, to tell us your favourite moments from the last nine shows. Now, you don't have to have been to the shows to nominate a favourite moment. All of the concerts have been broadcast on RTÉ Radio One shortly after the live performances.
And to help, here's a list of every single piece of music that we have featured!
LIST OF MUSIC PLAYED AT MOONEY TUNES CONCERTS
01. Begin The Beguine
02. Ev’ry Time We Say Goodbye
03. Lizst Rhapsody No. 2
04. Beat Out That Rhythm
05. O Mio Babino Caro
06. Pink Panther Theme
08. Pure Imagination
09. Silent Night
10. Che Gilida Manina
11. Nessun Dorma
12. My Way
13. Under My Skin
14. When A Child Is Born
15. Sing Sing Sing
16. Let It Snow
18. Also Sprach Zarathustra
19. Bridge Over Troubled Water
20. E il Sol Dell Amina from Rigoletto
21. Donizetti – Una Furtiva Lagrima
23. Tchaikovsky-Polonaise Onegin
24. Roll Back The Clouds
25. She's Out Of My Life
26. You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me
27. Bond Theme
28. Moonraker / Diamonds Are Forever
29. Minuet & Badiniere from Orchestral Suite No. 2
31. My Heart Will Go On
32. Lonesome Boatman
33. O Holy Night
34. Mediation from Thais
35. That's Amore
36. In Paradisum
37. Gabriel's Oboe
38. The Way We Were
39. Last Christmas
40. Hark The Herald Angels Sing
41. As Long As He Needs Me
42. Soul Bossa Nova
43. Marriage Of Figaro: Duettino Sul Aria
44. One Day Like This
46. Swan Lake: Introduction
47. Send In The Clowns
48. I Left My Heart In San Francisco
49. My Heart Will Go On
50. Les Mis: Bring Him Home
51. Carmen: Intermezzo
52. Ain't No Mountain High Enough
53. South Pacific - Some Enchanted Evening
54. Verdi - La Traviata - Siempre Libre
55. Have I Told You Lately
56. Time To Say Goodbye
57. True Friends
58. Hello Dolly
59. Daydream Believer
60. Requiem - Pie Jesu
61. Someone To Watch Over Me
62. The Sound Of Music: Climb Every Mountain
63. The Producers
64. Nessun Dorma
65. Star Of Bethlehem
66. Nowhere Man
67. Marino Waltz
68. The Christmas Song
69. Hope from 'Irish Destiny'
70. In Your Eyes
71. Why Me?
72. Rock 'n' Roll Kids
73. O Holy Night
74. Dances With Wolves
75. Wind Beneath My Wings
76. Old Man River
77. Fields of Athenry
78. Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head
79. O Mio Babbino Caro
80. Suite from The Quiet Man
81. Over The Rainbow
83. Adagio from Spartacus
84. The Bridge (An Droichead)
85. Theme from JFK/West Wing
86. Memory from Cats
87. Un Bel Di
88. Ave Maria
89. Elizabethan Serenade
90. Born Free
91. Can't Take My Eyes Off of You (You're Just Too Good To Be True)
92. As Long As He Needs Me
93. Por Una Cabeza
95. When A Child Is Born
96. I'll Be Home For Christmas
97. Baby, It's Cold Outside
98. Trepak from The Nutcracker Suite
99. Once Upon A Time In The West
100. Vilia from The Merry Widow
101. Jingle Bells Forever
102. Va Pensiero (Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves)
103. Song Of Bernadette
104. Harry's Wonderous World
106. You Raise Me Up
107. Silent Night 1915
108. Do Re Me
109. Somewhere Over The Rainbow
110. O Holy Night
111. A Christmas Festival/ Sleigh Ride
112. Theme From Dragnet
113. Fiddler On The Roof
114. Nella Fantasia
115. Flower Duet
116. Champagne Polka
117. One Fine Day (from Madame Butterfly)
118. The Coolin
119. Hymn To Hope
120. Everybody Hurts
121. 80's TV Themes Medley
122. We Have All The Time In The World
123. 633 Squadron
124. Star Trek
125. Le Basque
127. We Shall Overcome
128. It's For You
129. When I Fall In Love
131. Cinema Paradiso
132. Impossibly Beautiful
133. Danny Boy
134. You'll Never Walk Alone
136. Hawaii Five-O
137. William Tell Overture
138. A Summer Place / Music To Watch Girls By
139. Everybody’s Talking
140. Sunday Miscellany theme
141. Onedin Line / Spartacus
142. Gabriel’s Oboe – The Mission
143. Radetsky March
144. Anvil Chorus
145. Mise Eire
146. Classical Gas
148. Ravel’s Bolero
149. Barccarolle - O Sole Mio
150. Chariots Of Fire
151. Hallelujah Chorus
152. Cavalleria Rusticana
Mooney Tunes 10 will take place on Friday, June 13th at the Bord Gáis Energy Theatre at 8pm. Tickets will go on sale the program is finalised. We want people to nominate from the list of tunes on the website. And we may even include a couple of surprises. It will be the middle of the summer, so why not think of some of your summer favourites!? E-mail email@example.com, with the subject line 'Mooney Tunes 10'!
"Mary" got in touch with the programme to say she had a family of foxes in her small urban back garden. Although she likes wildlife, she did not want a family of five foxes in her garden. After going through all the options, she decided to have the foxes destroyed. Mooney Goes Wild reporter Terry Flanagan visited "Mary" to find out more...
One man who deals with this issue on a weekly basis is Kieran Buckley, Conservation Ranger for South Dublin at the National Parks and Wildlife Service, and he joins us in studio this afternoon...
If you want a visual accompaniment to our guide to Dawn Chorus Birdsong, look no further than one of our favourite books here on Mooney Goes Wild.
It's called The Birds Of Ireland, and written by MGW regular Jim Wilson. Joining us in studio today is Jim's partner in crime, when it came to putting together that book, photographer Mark Carmody, with his top tips for photographing birds and wildlife...
Common Blue Butterfly
Great Spotted Woodpecker
Mark's Top Five Wildlife Photography Tips:
1. Know your subject well (how it behaves, its likes and dislikes etc)
2. Be patient
3. Research the area where you want to photograph - reconnaissance is key (where the sun rises, travels and sets; prevailing wind; natural cover; disturbance etc)
4. Buy good lenses (good glass is more important than the camera body) and know how the lenses behave in certain conditions
5. Have fun! - the most important tip
The Birds Of Ireland
Following the success of Ireland’s Garden Birds, Jim Wilson has teamed up with Mark Carmody for a collaborative work that is in a different mould from their previous publications, Freshwater Birds Of Ireland and Shorebirds Of Ireland.
An important tool of a birdwatcher is a good identification guide. Most cover the birds of Europe and few deal exclusively with Ireland.
This first photographic identification guide to the birds of Ireland has over 1,600 photos of more than 260 species, in an easy, quick-reference format.
With eight to fifteen images per species, the key identification features of each bird are shown, with concise descriptions and pointers to indicate important features.
This guide is produced in association with BirdWatch Ireland, Ireland’s leading bird conservation organisation. The purchase of this guide contributes funds to BirdWatch Ireland’s conservation and education initiatives to help protect and promote Ireland’s wild birds and habitats.
The Birds of Ireland: A Field Guide (Paperback) by Jim Wilson & Mark Carmody is published by The Collins Press. The ISBN is 978-1848891-79-1 and the RRP: €14.99. More details are available here.
The Genealogy Roadshow is back for a brand new series! RTÉ’s The Genealogy Roadshow is now an international hit series. PBS in America has already broadcast a US version of the show shot in Detroit, San Francisco, Nashville and Austin, Texas. Season 2 of the US show is on the way. The original Irish programme is returning to screens on May 11th with a brand new series full of amazing stories. Once again the people of Ireland are the stars of the show. The series will be presented again by Derek Mooney, and to tell us more about the series, we are joined in studio today by Philip McGovern, Executive Producer of The Genealogy Roadshow and Managing Director of Big Mountain Productions, the company behind The Genealogy Roadshow...
The Roadshow's crack historical and genealogical team help people trace their family’s roots and discover surprising stories from the past. People from all four provinces got to know the truth about tragic events, infamous ancestors and famous cousins.
Thousands of people contacted the show with questions. Some wanted to know if they were related to someone famous. Others wanted to solve mysteries going back generations. Others had heart-breaking adoption stories and tales of families ravaged by war.
The Genealogy team set out to help these people fill in the blanks. The mission was to answer the questions, solve the riddles and uncover the truth. Some people get the news they want but not every tale has a happy ending. In this series, there are tears of pride and joy, as well as fantastic surprises.
The Genealogy Roadshow also sheds light on the people history has forgotten. The team look at local and national events and ask who didn’t get the credit they deserve? They also take a look at people and events you think you know, but tell the stories you haven’t heard before.
This year the show has added technology to the bag of tricks. Historians and witnesses from around the world are able to beam in directly to the roadshow to give expert testimony and corroborate evidence.
Some of the stories involve Irish people in far flung places:
Irish immigrants starting a new life in Argentina were part of an international crisis as thousands were scammed out of their life savings and left stranded in a strange land;
An innocent Irish girl was gunned down in a Canadian frontier town, caught up in a local blood feud;
A Wexford man was spared a terrible fate at Custer’s Last Stand, only to be forgotten by history, until now;
A Longford woman went to America and became a notorious criminal in the era of Al Capone.
Some of the stories are closer to home:
After years of listening to his father’s stories, a Dundalk man finds out once and for all if he is related to St. Oliver Plunkett;
A Cork man discovers that his relatives were saved from the gallows by none other than Daniel O’Connell in a famous trial;
The tale of an Orangeman’s wife who kept her Catholic identity a secret, even from her family, for her whole life;
And there’s even some myth-busting in this series as the team delve into the mystery of 'The Lost Village of Audleystown' to see if there’s any evidence to back up the story of a village full of families who were forcibly migrated to the USA by a wicked land owner who levelled their homes.
This original Irish programme is back on your screens from this Sunday, May 11th at 7pm, on RTÉ One.
How would you fancy a little bit of country star Nathan Carter in the front room of your house? The really good news is Nathan Carter has agreed to do a house party for a Mooney listener anywhere in the country on Tuesday, May 13th.
That's the one and only Nathan Carter, who topped the Irish charts despite stiff competition from international artists including Kodaline & One Direction, and who will play for one lucky listener. In our Mooney House Party shows, top Irish entertainers come into your home and sing exclusively for you, your friends and family.
They have been tremendously success with entertainers such as Brian Kennedy, The Furey Brothers and Davey Arthur, Paul Harington, Jack L and Daniel O'Donnell! Our singers have performed in a listener's kitchen, front room and even in a barn.
Well if you fancy the wonderfully talented Nathan Carter in your home, all you have to do is e-mail Mooney and tell us why you want Nathan with you? Are you his number one fan? Have you travelled the lent and breath of the country to see him sing? Have you a special anniversary or celebration coming up? Or simply, would you just like a knees up in your own home?
Whatever the reason, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org and tell us why you want Nathan there and who you’d have there, and why you deserve to have him - and don’t forget to give us your phone number!
The date again is Tuesday, May 13th - so get in touch now!
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.
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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