The robin, not the turkey, is the real Christmas bird; you'll find him on cards, cakes and Christmas trees. But is Robin Redbreast having us on? Is he really the friendly and gentle little fellow he seems? Does he deserve his special Christmas place? Dr. Richard Collins, scientific adviser to Mooney Goes Wild, investigates! To read more about this special documentary, and to listen to the programme, click here.
On Mooney today, with Shay Byrne...
Cartoonist and caricaturist Niall O'Loughlin reveals some secrets of the sketcher, one Irish mega fan celebrates his odyssey following Bob Dylan around the world for the past 30 years, and we look at the challenges faced by wheelchair users when socialising in pubs, venues and nightclubs...
Shay chats to Brenda Donohue and caricaturist Niall O'Loughlin about the good weather and how we celebrate it, the forthcoming movie Jersey Boys, double-seats in cinemas, the movie Frozen and Father's Day!
The last time caricaturist Niall O'Loughlin was on the programme he brought with him a picture of Derek. And none of Brenda! So he decided to make amends and he has brought one in with him today! Niall O'Loughlin joins Shay in studio for a chat about how to draw caricatures...
Niall's caricature of Brenda Donohue!
Whilst Neil Francis was on the show in February, we received an e-mail from listener Niall O'Loughlin, which read "I am a caricaturist, have a look at the attachment I've sent you". We opened it to reveal this fantastic sketch of Neil Francis in a tutu ...
Fans of Bob Dylan, troubadour extraordinaire, will know that the maestro is in Ireland this week playing Dublin's O2 and the Marquee in Cork. Dylan devotees will also know that it is an astonishing 52 years since he released his first album.
But what they may not know is that when RTÉ’s own Brian Lally heads to Cork to attend Bob's concert tonight, it will be thirty years to the day since he went to his first Bob Dylan gig – which led him into a life as a die-hard "Bob-Cat", and he joins us in studio to chat about his admiration for Mr. Robert Zimmerman...
Our friend and producer Olan McGowan is a very sociable type! But recently, up in the office, he was chatting informally about a few things he was supposed to attend recently, but couldn't, due to lack of wheelchair access.
The rest of the team were a little taken aback. Like most people, we were under the impression that every venue, or restaurant, or pub, or nightclub had to provide wheelchair access in this day and age.
But not so, it seems! Far from it! So if you have a family member, or a friend, or colleague, who is a wheelchair user - or if you're a wheelchair user yourself - listen up. Because Olan has been digging into the legislation surrounding wheelchair access, and he joins Derek in studio today to tell us what he's uncovered...
Various stairclimbers as described by Olan McGowan on Mooney this afternoon
We also decided to talk to some wheelchair users to find out their experiences. So researcher Michele Browne went to Dun Laoghaire where she spoke to Colm Whooley and Joan Carty, who are respectively CEO and counsellor for Spinal Injuries Ireland. She then went to meet another wheelchair user, Graham Bolger.
Irish Wheelchair Association are preparing to launch their updated set of access guidelines, giving practical advice as to how to make your premises more accessible. You can download the guidelines here: http://www.iwa.ie/information/publications
Also available from the IWA information office is the Access Directory, a directory of companies providing equipment to make daily life easier for disabled people.
Assist Ireland is an arm of the Citizens Information Board, and they have an online resource providing information on daily living aids, mobility aids and assistive technology, along with a directory of products available in Ireland: http://www.assistireland.ie/eng/
The National Disability Authority
The National Disability Authority is the statutory body governing standards in this area. http://www.nda.ie/
The Equality Authority
For information about the Equal Status Act, the equality act and the employment equality act, you can contact the Equality Authority: http://www.equality.ie/en/
And we also received this e-mail into the office, from listener Dee:
My name is Dee Hoey and since 2005, following a brain tumor operation, I am a wheelchair user. I live in Bohernabreena, near Tallaght, Dublin 24. I like to go out and I have found, over the years, that it very difficult, when going out, to find an accessible venue.
I have started a blog, wheeloutandabout.wordpress.comof different restaurants, pubs, hotels etc. giving a brief review of what I have found. The blog has had well over 700 views and it is aimed at wheelchair users, but can be useful to people with buggies, walker users, people on crutches and if your generally less-able on your feet!
We are organising a singles night out for our listeners who are over 35! The where and when is still being finalised, but if you are interested in joining in the fun, then send us an e-mail! Let us know your age, gender, and if you are single. You must be available to travel to the venue at your own expense. Please send your e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, with the subject line 'Singles Night Out'. And keep listening for further information!
Search For A Child Star Finalists
Earlier this year, we launched our competition to find Ireland's newest child star. The competition was open to boys and girls who were aged 10 years old or under. We asked you to record a piece that was no more than three minutes long, and e-mail it in to us.
The finalists, in no particular order, are:
- Hannah Kinsella (9 years old, from Lucan, Co. Dublin) with Pushover - Nikki Brown (8 years old, from Saggart, Co. Dublin) with Colours Of The Wind - Anna Lily Fox (6 years old, from Ballinalee, Co. Longford) with a Johnny Cash medley - Laoise Farrell (9 years old, from Ogonnolloe. Co. Clare) with The Call - Alannah Bermingham (10 years old, from Kilmacud, Dublin) with Colours Of The Wind
The date for the final will be announced shortly and the winner will perform at our Christmas Mooney Tunes concert.
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 (www.npws.ie) 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 www.irishwildlifematters.ie