Wednesday, April 3rd 2013

This year's Dawn Chorus programme took place on Sunday, May 6th 2018, and was a roaring success!  All India Radio producer Monika Gulati sent us a pic of herself sporting our Dawn Chorus beanie!!

May Events

Well whilst our Dawn Chorus programme may have finished for another year, throughout May, events are still taking place around the country to celebrate the beautiful birdsong that our feathered friends provide.  For more information on these events, and on the annual Burren In Bloom festival that takes place from May 18th - 20th, visit our events listings page!  And if you have an event you'd like to let our listeners know about, e-mail

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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.



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

On Mooney today...

Mary Kingston finds out why, in the age of Twitter and Facebook, people bent on revenge may quickly regret it, Kationa McFadden continues her trail along the Camino de Santiago, and we’ve music from songwriter Vyvienne Long!


In advance of the 58th Eurovision Song Contest (May 14th – 18th, Malmö, Sweden), indulge your Eurovision fever with Derek and the RTÉ Concert Orchestra!

Mooney's Eurovision Melodies will take place in the Main Auditorium at the National Concert Hall on Thursday, May 9th at 8pm, and joining the RTÉ Concert Orchestra will be Eurovision legends Niamh Kavanagh, Paul Harrington and more...

A nostalgic celebration of the heady days of Ireland’s past success in Eurovision and in anticipation of future glory (!), the programme will include What’s Another Year?, In Your Eyes, Volare, Rock’n’Roll Kids ... and there may be a few surprises!

Prices range from €13.50 to €39.50, and there is a 10% discount for groups of 10 or more. To book, click here or call the NCH Box Office on 01 417-0000.

The Price Of Revenge

The Price Of Revenge

Does wreaking revenge ever actually do us any good? Or does the hurt it causes always return to haunt us in the end? Are you hurting 'yourself' more than 'them'? However tempted a wronged person may feel to take revenge, it's always a good idea to step back and take stock first.

One of the hottest shows on TV at the moment, Revenge (pictured), tells of a young woman called Emily who is intent on seeking revenge against those who separated her from her father. And around watercoolers it prompted the question - how far would you go to get your own back on someone who had done you wrong?

Mary Kingston met up with Rachel Henderson, who is a life coach; she talked about how the easy access and immediacy of social media (such as Twitter and Facebook) has made taking revenge a whole lot easier - but at what cost?

And Mary also headed down to Bray, to ask those strolling the waterfront: is revenge ever ok?

Camino de Santiago de Compostela - Days Three And Four

Camino de Santiago de Compostela - Days Three And Four

Mooney reporter Katriona McFadden is walking the Camino De Santiago in Spain this week and is sending us back ‘Audio Diary’ reports. She is walking it with her fiancé, JP. One of JP’s jobs is to give Katriona a boiled sweet before she has to walk up a hill. Otherwise she gets cranky apparently!

Katriona is travelling courtesy of, an Irish company specialising in accommodation, transport & luggage transfer along the Camino.


Because it is Easter week and the schools are out, many families are choosing to walk the Camino. At breakfast we met Michelle Sparks from Johannesburg and her two daughters Cassidy (13) and Tanika (12 - pictured below).

Cassidy (13) and Tanika (12) Sparks from Johannesburg. They were walking the last 220km of the Camino with their Mum, Michelle. Michelle walked the entire French Way last year (800km) and vowed afterwards she would never do the Camino again! After a couple of months she missed the Camino and saved up enough money to bring her two girls along this year on their Easter Holidays.

Michelle walked the entire French Way last year (800km) and decided to bring her girls with her this year to walk the last 200km. Tanika thinks the Camino is a great way of ‘getting to know your inner self and deciding if there is anything you would like to change about yourself’ – wise words from a 12 year old!

It was raining again this morning when we said goodbye to the Sparks and started on our merry way. Palas De Rei didn’t have an outdoor shop after all but the raincoat problem was solved by a newsagent who sold giant plastic ponchos for €4. Happy days!

His and hers rain ponchos!

Today’s walk was a lot prettier than yesterday’s, lots of forest and farmyard and very little main road. It was also the most challenging, mud-wise. We encountered lake-like puddles and took our time finding the best way around them.

Mud, everywhere!

Tired, anyone?!

We also past the halfway mark (pictured below). We took a photo of the 55km milestone to remind ourselves that we are getting closer and closer to Santiago.

Halfway to Santiago - yay!

Melide is a charming little town, the sun came out as we approached it and we were here in time to explore and eat some delicious ‘Pulpo’ (pictured below). Pulpo is Galician octopus, it is on every menu we have encountered, and we were told that Melide is one of the best towns to eat it in.

Pulpo or Galician octopus

As we walked in the door of ‘Pulperia Garnacha’ we could see an old lady standing at a counter furiously chopping up an octopus with a knife. It is then drizzled with oil and sprinkled in paprika and sea salt and it tastes... Yum!

We shared a bench with a Spanish couple and told them (in broken Spanish) that we are from Ireland and are walking the Camino de Santiago. They congratulated us on finding the best Pulperia in Melide! We are staying in the Hotel Carlos 96. The manager, Luis Castro, lived in London until he was 20. His family then moved back to Melide to pursue their dream of opening a hotel.

The best Pulperia in Melide!

He tells me that people travel for miles to eat Pulpo in Melide. When he hears we are interested in food he brings us a cheese tasting plate. Arzua (our next stop on the Camino) is famous for cheese he says. “The second-best-selling cheese in Spain after Manchego” He also offers us some local wine. The region is known for its white wine but they’ve started making some good reds he says. Winemakers had all but given up on trying to produce red wine. Temperatures in the valley were warm by day but cold by night. Totally unsuitable conditions for red wine production. Local monks persevered however and discovered the key to growing grapes for red wine was to place large stones in the soil. The stones absorb heat from the sun during the day and slowly release it at night when it is colder. Another local delicacy are the ‘Pimientos de Padron’ (pictured), little green peppers cooked and rolled in salt.

Pimientos de Padron - delicious!

My left hip started to hurt today, walking up and down stairs wasn’t easy. JP says I am turning into an old woman. But no blisters and another easy walking day tomorrow, only 13km to Arzua.

Here’s hoping that the sun will still be shining tomorrow!


The sun has got his hat on. Hip hip hip hooray! Today’s walk was the prettiest yet, market traders were setting up their stalls as we left pretty Melide and we encountered lots of quiet country roads, footbridges and forest paths.

Leaving Melide

Bright yellow butterflies fluttered along beside us as we walked. We came across a little unmanned ‘honour shop’ en route (pictured). Pilgrims were free to buy a punnet of strawberries or a slice of cake from the stall and leave the correct amount in the money tin.

An unmanned 'honour shop' at the side of the road - take what you want and leave the correct amount in the money tin.

Because we only had 13km to walk today we decided against stopping for lunch and pushed on to Arzua instead. We made only one short stop, to have a Coke in the newly-opened ‘German Cafe’. The owner told me he opened it last year and is delighted with how business has been so far. The last time we walked the Camino (2010) we couldn’t get accommodation in Arzua. We felt like Mary and Joseph getting turned away from every ‘albergue’ and hotel we tried.

In the end-up we slept on a basketball court inside a sports centre with a hundred or so Spanish secondary school students who insisted on playing football all night long.

Pretty countryside en route to Arzua

Today it is nice to know that our accommodation is pre-booked for us. The Pension El Retiro is our guesthouse and is the first building we see on the left as we enter Arzua. On Luis’ instruction, we will try some more cheese tonight. A big walking day tomorrow. 23km to Amenal.

Vyvienne Long

Vyvienne Long

Dublin will be hosting the Dublin Beatles Festival this November to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the band’s first visit to the Dublin in 1963. The Beatles played Dublin’s Adelphi Cinema on Middle Abbey Street (now Arnott’s car park) on Thursday, November 7th 1963.

The songs of The Beatles are amongst the most celebrated, loved and covered pieces of music ever written.  Vyvienne Long is a singer, songwriter and cellist from Dublin, and she joins Derek in studio today to chat about the return of The Beatles Show to the Odessa Club this month, her involvement with that, and to play some Beatles classics for us!

THE BEATLES SHOW returns to Dublin for six performances in April (22nd - 25th); it consists of three Beatles-related plays – LENNON v McCARTNEY / DEATH AND THE BEATLES FAN / JOHN LENNON’S LAST DAY – plus the music of The Beatles performed live by VYVIENNE LONG and THE NEWSPAPER TAXI MEN. Tickets for the show cost €16 (including booking fee).  For more information about the show, visit click here.  And to visit Vyvienne's website, click here.

And if you'd like to enjoy Vyvienne's version of And I Love Her once more, then just click to play below! 


Tom Cruise

Tom Cruise

Tom Cruise is in Dublin today for the premiere of his new movie Oblivion, and between all his interviews and engagements, he found time for a quick chat on the phone with Derek...

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.

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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