Sunday, 15 December 2013

December Calendar



At this time of the year the most valuable thing in your garden is the bird table/feeder.  At the moment the garden is alive with little and medium sized birds swooping in and enjoying the grub left out for them.  I spend ages each day watching the antics that unfold.  Especially the feisty robin trying to claim all the territory and grub for himself!

The Birdwatch Ireland Survey is still running. The link is as follows
There you can fill it out online or print out a sheet for whatever suits your needs.  Get all the family involved.

If you are out for a walk, some of the hedgerows and trees are now bare of foliage, sometimes you can be lucky enough to see nests that were used during the spring and summer breeding season.  Many of the small birds have neat rounded nests, whereas the crows, rooks and jackdaws have incredibly messy nests high up in trees.

Even more birds are visiting our wetlands and shores at this time of year.  Duck, waders and swans are to be seen now, many drakes displaying magnificent plumage before the mating season starts.  If you cannot get to the shore try the Tralee Bay Wetlands Centre in Tralee for an abundance in birdlife.

As Christmas approaches many of us bring the traditional foliage into our homes.  The holly with the bright red berries (female one only) is often considered unlucky to bring indoors but I have always brought some in from the bush in my garden to put over the fireplace.  I also bring in ivy, sometimes to the dismay of others as the odd spider gets brought in too!  I have never found mistletoe yet, I understand it likes to piggy back on certain fruit trees like apple and lime or hawthorn and poplar too.  Maybe a walk in the National Park in Killarney might help me see it in its natural habitat.  The Park is featured in the Winter edition of Irish Wildlife Magazine.
From all of us in the Kerry Branch, have a very warm, safe and happy Christmas.

Friday, 15 November 2013

November Calendar

Make some Bird cake

Garden birds spend up to 85 % of their day feeding just to survive. The fat reserves they build up during the day are used up over night when roosting in winter conditions. Here is a great way to make your own bird cake which will greatly help them through the winter. Keep your old glass jars (shallow with wide opening work best) and fill them with a selection of any of the following ingredients Mixed seed, Peanuts, sunflower hearts, black sunflower seeds, Nyjer seed, dried fruit, oatmeal. Then pour lard (waste fat or suet from your roasting tray , frying pan etc) in to the jars and it will make its way down through the seeds making it into a solid block. Let it cool and its ready to serve. Place the jar on its side on the bird table. Place a weight at each side of the jar to stop it from rolling. Sit back and watch the birds feasting.

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Deer Rut With Colin Heaslip

Sunday, 20th October, Killarney National Park

On Sunday morning, I woke-up to the sound of rain water overflowing my gutters and crashing on to the footpath below. First, I thought it's time I clear out my gutters, and then, I thought our Deer Rut event was going to be a wash-out. However, as we travelled towards Killarney the rain abated and the clouds began to allow that clean crisp light of the morning through. Things continued on the up after that.

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Coastwatch 2013

The Coastwatch Survey effort this year has been a huge improvement over last year, with upwards of 50 survey units completed thus far (25km of coastline), and still a few days to go!  Coastwatch Europe and Tralee Bay Wetlands would like to thank everyone involved this year for their time and effort, from primary school classes all the way through to their grandparents!

Monday, 30 September 2013

Killarney National Park - Autumn Talks

Over the next few weeks Killarney National Park will be hosting a series of free evening talks which are open to the public. The talks cover a range of topics from Drama, Geology, Photography and of course Wildlife.

For dates, times & venue see the official leaflet - Click here
Also see the Killarney National Park website for more information

Monday, 9 September 2013

Waders with Frank King

Yesterday (Sunday 8/9/13), we met in Blennerville next to the Windmill for our Wader & Shore bird event with Frank King. The weather stayed dry and there was hardly a puff of wind although it is somewhat dull for the photographers in the group.

Monday, 26 August 2013

Beach Combing on Derrymore Stand

Our own Brigid Vinnell  (branch PRO) led this event on Derrymore strand, Tralee bay. The event was planned to coincide with an extremely low spring tide and the weather, which started cloudy, only improved over the course of the event.

Saturday, 17 August 2013

Dawn Chorus Walk @ Tralee Wetlands Centre

Group Shot
On the morning of the 27th of July some branch members met in the car park of the Wetlands centre and circumnavigated the site under the guidance of Ed Carthy (Kerry Birding Group). The Wetlands site contains a number of different habitats such as reed beds, woodlands, open grassland and ponds, lakes and water ways. At each habitat Ed advised on the birds we were hearing and his keen eye was able to identify the various species we saw with just a split second glimpse.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Autumn / Winter Events

We've just finished finalising our programme of events of the coming Autumn / Winter season and what an exciting programme it is!

You'll find the events listed in our Upcoming Events calendar on this page and prior to each event we will be reminding people via our Newsletter so make you have subscribed (see the sign up form on this page).

Remember for outdoor events to dress appropriately and don't forget to bring your camera and binoculars - you never know what you might see.

Looking forward to seeing you there

Getting Started

We're just getting started on Blogger so please bare with us. It shouldn't take us too long though.

We intend using this blog to promote our upcoming events and also to post reviews and pictures of these events when they're over. We will also post details of projects and campaigns that the Kerry branch are involved in.