Friday 24th April: Wicklow Uplands Wildlife Event – a one day event focusing on the uplands, their biodiversity and responsible use. A series of talks given by guest speakers at Kippure Estate, Manor Kilbride at 10am will be followed up by a field outing in the afternoon. Lunch provided. For more information see the Facebook event page here. This event is free but spaces are limited so booking is necessary. Please e-mail Sinéad Cummins to book a place [email protected] or call directly at 01-2812411.
Saturday 25th April: Upland bird outing along the Wicklow Way (White Hill/Djouce) in search of Red Grouse, Golden Plover, Raven, Skylark etc. Meet at Ballinastoe Wood car park (opposite Lough Tay) at 10am. For more information and a map to meeting location see the Facebook event page here. Please note that this event will require a moderate level of hiking so suitable strong footwear and appropriate outdoor clothing are advised.
Have you seen a Hoopoe? A remarkable influx of Hoopoe has occurred in Ireland this Spring with close to 60 birds recorded mostly along the south coast between Kerry and Wexford so far. One was seen recently at Greystones in Co. Wicklow however! (pics of this beautiful bird can be viewed here). If you are fortunate enough to have seen a Hoopoe in Ireland already this year or do come across one then we’d love to hear from you. We are collating records in order to keep tabs on this most unexpected influx and would be grateful if you could provide us with the date, location and pictures of any records relating to this stunning continental vagrant.
Spring Alive! With migrant bird species now flooding into the country to breed, we are once again asking members of the public to submit their first sightings of Swallow, Cuckoo and Swift of the year to the Spring Alive project so we can track the progress of Spring migration across the country and across Europe. See the Spring Alive website for details on how to do this.
Request for records of breeding Mute Swans: The Irish Midlands Ringing Group is undertaking a survey of breeding Mute Swans on the east coast of Ireland as an update to the same survey conducted by Richard Collins 25 years ago. They are requesting the assistance of BirdWatch Ireland Wicklow Branch members and ask them to report sightings of breeding Mute Swans in the county. Traditional breeding sites would include Kilcoole, Broad Lough and Arklow town ponds but they would like find out if they are present in other areas such as the Vartry and Poulaphouca Reservoirs, golf courses (Druids Glen, Kilcoole, Blainroe etc.), country estates, farm ponds, parks and rivers. The survey process is totally unobtrusive: they would simply like to know where there are swans nesting, if they have cygnets and then if so how many. Approaching nests is not required, viewing from a safe distance with binoculars or a telescope is sufficient. All sightings can be sent to Graham Prole at [email protected].