Barn owl encounter

I was out for a routine tramp around the patch about a month ago when something dropped out of a big clump of ivy in the top of a hawthorn tree. It hit the ground with a thud and, curiosity piqued, I headed over to investigate. As I approached the tree a rustling in the […]

A natural remedy for a hectic lifestyle

Life these days is a bit of a dizzy whirlwind. With work pressures, children, ever-present household chores and sundry other demands on our finite sliver of attention, it can be hard to find time for nature. But I find taking even a little “time out” to connect with the natural world around me, even if […]

West Cork humpback adventure

It was a glorious morning on Toe Head in West Cork. The sun was shining, and the April breeze, while still a bit keen, wasn’t at all uncomfortable. At my feet was a stunning vista spanning from Galley Head to the east all the way around to the Fastnet Rock to the West. But I […]

Awesome minibeasts

I still remember the sense of wonder I felt when, as a little boy, I used to turn over boulders in the rockery. My Dad — a keen gardener — was far less keen on my impromptu re-arrangement of his hard-landscaping, but I was more interested in the fascinating world unearthed beneath the hastily relocated […]

Don’t just look up: look everywhere!

“Look up!” is the catch phrase coined by celebrity UK birder David Lindo, the self-styled “Urban Birder”, and it is, by and large, pretty sound advice. If you find yourself wandering the city streets with time to kill, glancing periodically above your head can reveal some truly remarkable things. David gained prominence on the BBC’s […]

Anticipation Junkie

It was one of those calm spring days where you feel anything is possible. The Atlantic, while not quite flat, had only the tiniest of swells. Gazing out over a vast expanse of blue, a distant haze towards the horizon was the only impediment to otherwise perfect visibility. You got the sense that at any […]

Welcome to the jungle; it’s closer than you think

There’s nothing like getting out into the wilds and experiencing nature first hand, raw and unspoilt. Here in Ireland we’re fortunate to have some fantastic wild places, and no matter where you live nature is never far away. That said, there are times when even the most ardent nature fanatic has to stay indoors. Life’s […]

Wildlife Column in the Irish Independent

Stop the presses! News just in that I’m going to be writing a regular wildlife column for the Irish Independent newspaper. I’m still finalising the details in terms of column frequency and other logistics with the Independent’s editorial team, but the first column, dubbed “Unseasonal Shenanigans” will feature on page 21 of the newspaper’s Weekend […]

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