Welcome to our latest fortnightly newsletter!
Over the past few weeks huge amounts of work have been going on in preparation for the opening of our online shop. We are working hard to get the shop up and running in time for Christmas. Our focus, as with all our work, is to spread a positive message about nature and to encourage engagement with nature. We have put together a fantastic selection of packages and individual items, each and every one selected to align with that message. Also, keeping in mind our principle of sustainability we are working to make sure that all packaging is either compostable, biodegradable or recyclable. To the greatest extent that we can possibly manage, our products will produce no landfill waste.
We are putting the finishing touches on the competition that we will be running in September. More details on that below.
As well as all of this, we have now completed the addition of all red-listed birds to the Species Watch and have started adding our native mammals.
Competition Coming Soon
The big news that we have for you this newsletter is that we are going to be running a competition for the month of September. The prize will be a pair of Opticron Oregon 4 PC 8x42 binoculars.
Going out for a walk in nature and spotting a new bird, butterfly or other creature that you've never seen before is a fantastically exciting experience. We want to encourage as many people as possible to get involved in this amazing adventure and a good pair of binoculars is a great asset for anyone who is interested in nature spotting. The pair we have selected is a perfect choice for someone who is interested in getting started and are also highly recommended by Birdwatch Ireland in their latest newsletter.
Species Focus: The Red-necked Phalarope
In this newsletter we're taking a look at the red-necked phalarope. It is a small wading bird that breeds in the northern areas of America and Europe. Ireland is on the extreme edge of the breeding range but the red-necked phalarope has bred here in the past. The maximum recorded number of breeding pairs (in about 1900) was 50.
Unusually for a bird species the females are larger and more brightly coloured than the males due to the fact that the traditional male/female breeding roles are reversed. The females pursue and fight over males and will defend their mate from other females. The males perform all incubation and chick-rearing.
The red-necked phalarope is a rare summer and winter visitor mostly between May and October. It migrates south and winters at sea on tropical oceans.
It is red-listed in Ireland due to the very small breeding population.