Mooney, Monday September 9th 2013

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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...

The Germans are known to be highly efficient, punctual, thrifty and law abiding - we speak to the English reporter who tried to live like the Germans for a fascinating documentary. Brenda Donohue gets expert advice on the most nutritious foods to put in your lunchbox, and we hear about a new play which explores trying to find love on the internet...

What You Should Be Putting In Your Lunchbox!

What You Should Be Putting In Your Lunchbox!

Well - the drama is over! The children are all settled down in school for the new term and it’s back to the routine of uniforms, collections and lunch boxes. But did you know that two out of every three Irish parents struggle to come up with healthy ideas to fill school lunch boxes on a daily basis?

Come to think of it, it’s not just children that struggle with interesting, healthy lunches boxes - we all do.

Whether we are going on a long road trip, bringing a lunch into work or packing a sandwich to bring to Croke Park for The All-Ireland Hurling Final replay.

Brenda met up with nutritionist and dietician Dr Mary McCreery, from Blackrock Clinic, who believes it’s important to put food in your lunch box that you LIKE as opposed to something you don’t really like, but believe to be healthy...

For more information on how to create a healthy and varied lunchbox, this info page and download from SafeFood may be of interest:

Living Like A German

There are some people that are what you might call devoted to their work, but there are few of any of us who have gone quite to the extremes of BBC journalist and documentary maker Justin Rowlatt...

Firstly, his wife walked to hospital in labour because he had committed to reduce the carbon footprint of his entire family for a year - and then he brought half his family to live in German to try and see how German they could become!

Justin working at the Faber Castell pencil factory in Germany

For one, he found out that he would have to be very focused on his job, and not send texts while working at a pencil factory!  Justin joins us from the BBC studios today to tell us what prompted him to up sticks and take his family teutonic...

For more information about the BBC TV programme Make Me A German, visit

Dublin Fringe Festival & GRINDR/ A Love Story

Dublin’s Fringe Festival is in full flight all across the capital, with over 100 productions about everything under the sun - from the GAA to Australian Dance troupes in briefs to comedy to dance!

And the woman who has been at the helm of the ship guiding it through the choppy waters of recession is its director Roise Goan, who joins Derek in studio to give us the lowdown on what's on. And we're also joined in studio by young playwright Oisin McKenna, who tells us about his play on finding love on the internet, called GRINDR/ A Love Story.

For more information about Dublin Fringe Festival, visit And for more information about GRINDR/ A Love Story, visit Please note that the play is not suitable for children.

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


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Music Played on the Show

Jumbo Breakfast Roll

Jumbo Breakfast Roll

Pat Shortt




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Presenter: Derek Mooney


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