Ranger Day (April)
On April 23rd we hosted a “Ranger Day” in Lough Boora parklands. We were very lucky and it was a great spring morning. We were joined by NPWS Ranger Noel Bugler, and together with him the Badger Club crew looked for clues to confirm Fallow Deer were using the area, looked for signs of different animals in the area and made a plaster cast of a “poachers boot print”. After that, the children went on a bug hunt, had a picnic, and went on to solve the mystery of the stolen White Tailed Eagle eggs! We had a fantastic time on the day.
Photo: Ranger Day in Lough Boora Parklands with NPWS Ranger Noel Bugler
Dusk Chorus Walk (May)
Our Badger Club Dusk Chorus Walk took place on May 20th in Garryhinch woods. Yet again we were lucky with the weather and despite a wet afternoon, the rain stayed away for the duration of the evening walk. We had a nice stroll and heard blackbird, song thrush, wren, robin, goldcrest, treecreeper and more. A big highlight was seeing a tree creeper climbing up a tree and also a grey wagtail flying over the river.
Offaly and Laois Photography Workshops (3rd and 9th July).
Both of these workshops booked out in less than a day, which was quite to our amazement!
The first of our two junior photography workshops took place on July 3rd in Garryhinch Forest, Co. Offaly. The forecast wasn’t great and it was threatening to rain but yet again we were lucky and after introductions, our group proceeded along the red loop in Garryhinch woods and looked for suitable subjects to photograph. Aside from a wealth of flowers, fungi and even fruit, we were lucky to see a range of butterflies, damselflies and other insects. The star of the day was definitely a kingfisher, who wasn’t at all phased by our group which was well spread out along the river bank. All in all it was a very enjoyable morning and feedback has been very positive.
The second workshop was in Abbeyleix Bog, Co. Laois, and took place on Saturday July 9th. We woke to torrential rain and it certainly didn’t look like the workshop would go away, but the weather gods mean well for the Badger Club and there wasn’t a single drop of rain on our walk! Puddles and wellies featured highly in the children’s photographs this week as the ground was very wet after the rain throughout the night. However, we also saw a wide range of wildflowers, fungi, butterflies, mosses, etc.
We would like to give our sincerest thanks to Heather Rice and Gerry Dunbar of Love.Joy Photography for generously sharing their time and expertise on the days of the workshops and thereafter.
Photo: Having a well earned break in Abbeyleix Bog at the Junior Photography Workshop
Heritage Week Junior Photographic Exhibitions
We are are excited to announce that we have received funding from both Laois and Offaly County Councils to produce professional quality prints of selected photos from the two workshops, and to prepare them for exhibition during Heritage Week. Heritage Week takes place from August 20th to 28th this year, and our photos will be on display in Abbeyleix Library in County Laois and Tullamore Library, County Offaly during this time (see ‘upcoming events’ for details).
Again, we are delighted to have both Heather and Gerry of Love.Joy Photography on board in selecting and preparing the images for exhibition, and to be able to gain advice from them in the run up to the exhibitions. We would also like to thank the Heritage Officers in Counties Offaly and Laois for their support.
We are planning to exhibit the pictures in several libraries across both counties after Heritage Week is over, so watch this space!
Photo: Junior photography exhibition as part of this year’s Heritage Week
Clara Bog Discovery Day, 11am July 28th.
Clara Bog Nature Reserve, Co. Offaly.
This event is fully booked. If you would like to be added to the reserve list, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Heritage Week Photographic Exhibitions, August 20th-28th
A selection of nature photographs taken by children aged 5-12. This exhibition celebrates the beauty and diversity of local wildlife as well as the talent of junior photographers. For opening times and more details please see links.