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Friday, May 29, 2009


"Have some seaweed pasta sauce, Ah go on, go on"

Samples of Marinated Aalaria (wakame), Laver bread (made with sloughan), Cheese and Dilisk Scones, Kelp Crisps, Carageen Chocolate Blancmange were all on offer at Kilfarrassey on Saturday last. Recipes available on the blog (check under March postings in Archive on left side) or by emailing Marie Power

Friday, May 15, 2009

Bealtaine events on 23rd and 24th May

As part of the Bealtaine Festival organised by Calmast, the Waterford branch of the Irish Wildlife Trust will host the following two events.

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Food for Free!
Join Marie Power on Saturday 23rd May at Kilfarassey Strand, Fenor, Co. Waterford for seaweed identification and it's use in cooking. The event will include samples of "sea vegetables" and dishes made from them, a scramble on the rocks to see how they grow and how to collect in a sustainable way, and some beauty uses of seaweed. Those interested should assemble at 10.30am at Kilfarrassey carpark.
Directions: From Tramore take coast road (R675) towards Dungarvan. Just before the village of Fenor, take the turn to the left which is signposted Kilfarassey. The car park is about a mile down this road.

Date: Sunday 24th May
Venue: Mahonbridge/ Comeraghs - Mahon bridge Village. Participants will learn about the animals and plants that live in the Comeraghs. The Crough Walk is a 2km woodland walk along the banks of the Mahon Stream. Here we will do some nature spotting, mammal tracking, tree naming, stream dipping and identifying bird calls.
The walk will be lead by Denis Cullen.We will assemble at 2.00 pm at Mahon Bridge. Directions: From Waterford take the N25 (Cork road). Turn off (right) just past Kilmacthomas for Mahonbridge. Continue for approximately 4km until you arrive in the village of Mahonbridge

Monday, May 11, 2009

Sand-lubbers at Work

Photos from IWT/AOL Volunteer day on May 7th at Tramore Sand Dunes.
25 conservation enthusiasts took to the dunes at 9 am yesterday morning to try to stabilise the dunes, which are under threat from weather, ocean, trampling, quadbiking etc. They came fromn Waterford-based company, AOL and along with Irish Wildlife Trust members and Education Officer Andrew, and Andy from Conservation Services (contractor working for Waterford County Council on this project) to transplant marram grass, lay protective mesh and clear up litter.
Blow-outs (areas without any grass or plants) are part of the process of erosion in which the exposed sand is vulnerable to the effects of wind etc, which can simply blow the dunes away, wiping out the homes of a large variety of insects, birds, mammals and plants which inhabit the area. And destroying a valuable amenity in this case. Marram Grass plays a key role in dune stabilisation, by "binding" the sand grains together, and by causing more sand to accumulate, leading to conditions which support other plant life and consequently, a stable dune. Mesh reduces the blow-off in exposed areas of sand. Tramore Dunes are part of an SAC (Special Area of Conservation # 000671. see for more information) and need intervention if they are to survive in the present form. The area has been fenced off to allow the grass to regenerate.
You can see that it was a sunny bluesky day and really great fun - what you can't see in the photos was the million grains of sand that got into hair, ears, noses, the kelley-kettle.... The wind was almost overpowering - litterpickers almost turned into kitesurfers over the Baldy Man when wind got into sacks!
But this was a determined and hardy group of people who stuck at the task till 4pm and great progress could be seen when we finally loaded up the tools and headed for home.

Bernie Guest, Waterford County Heritage Officer afterwards expressed her appreciation for the work to all involved.
We wouldn't like to see all the work wasted, so we're calling for everyone who goes there to respect the dunes, the fencing, avoid walking and report quadbiking (which is illegal) to Gardai (051 391620), Waterford County Council (051 39555) or The Wildlife Ranger (087 8541961).
This was the 3rd collaboration between AOL and IWT Waterford Branch, which has seen some useful voluntary work completed and there are plans to do more in July. We are also looking at the possiblity of setting up a regular conservation group to keep up the work on the dunes and other areas. For information, email Marie -
If you are interested in doing some practical conservation further afield, and perhaps taking an active summer holiday, 2 volunteering options are:
In Killarney Woods, clearing Rhodedendron - 1 week June, July or August ( or or on Clare Island, clearing Gunnera - 2 weeks - last week August and 1st week September.
Thanks to Sandra, from Dublin's Volunteer Group - the Grubby Gang - for these photos.

Climate Change Talk

Friends of the Earth will be holding a free multimedia talk on climate change presented by Gavin Harte in the Garter Lane Arts Centre in Waterford at 7.30pm on Tuesday 12th May. The talk is called "The Big Ask: Can we stop climate change?" and they are bringing this free event to Waterford as part of a nationwide tour.
The Big Ask Tour is an exciting mix of photographs, video clips, and animations which documents the enormous influence human activity is having on our planets climate, the serious impacts these are likely to have on all of us and what we can do about it.
For more information visit the Friends of the Earth website or call 01-6394652