Turf Cutting

Whats the pin’s view on this cutting edge topic of 21st Century Ireland?

I’m not often shocked by things I see in Museums…but I did say ‘Jasus’ out loud, when at the Connemara National Park Museum, I saw the Before and After maps of bogland wildlife areas in the 1800s and 2010…there is a tiny smidgin of it left, maybe 5% of what once was there, and with that, a tiny smidgin left of the birdlife, wildlife, flora and fauna that live in them…who here has ever seen a wild otter, or a dragonfly, or red grouse…

And yet 300 years ago, the country was full of them.

Against that…the reason the country has been cleared of its bogs is industrial extraction by Bord Na Mona…not Luke Ming Flanagan and his cousins…

Leaving Ming out of it… I do think its a bit harsh to turn around to the locals in Roscommon and say you cant harvest a bog, just because a state organisation has dug up so much of it that its an endangered habitat…

…against that, I think its even more harsh to dig up an endangered habitat when you can get a gas heater instead…

Once you dig it up…you never get it back again. Its unique and irreplaceable.

we humans think only of ourselves (cant believe I am writing this shite). In this country, there are 4mn people…there are 8mn chickens, 4mn pigs, 3mn cows and a few mn sheep…all there to feed us…

Against that, there are 10’000 otters…whose principal habitat is bogland…should we cut that number back to 5000?

Bord na Mona “workers” are selfish little shits, that are destroying our country and demanding to be paid a subsidy for doing so.

Shut it down NOW!

Saw a grouse once at our bog about 10 years ago, I read that sheep wire also played a big part in their demise (as they fly so low).
Does anyone know how long bogs can sustain cutting for households on a small time basis?

I’ve never seen an otter in Ireland, but dragonfly were plentiful around the Grand Canal when I was young, and my uncle used to shoot red grouse in Wicklow.

There are annoying dragon flies on a hundred golf courses around Dublin. Get rid of those smelly bogs!

… only joking. I think turf cutting should be ended, on the small and large scale. Everyone should get up the wicklow mountains and off the beaten track, and have a look at a stream bed cut down to the granite through ten thousand years of bog growth. It’s an awe-inspiring sight (admittedly more for the thought of it than any particular wonder in the uniform turf, although you do see the odd piece of wood poking out).

Nice one…I must get out to Wicklow soon…thats just the motivation I need.

Now if only it would stop raining.

Saw a tame otter in Donegal back in the mid 80s. The guy who had it did a bit of fishing so it was well fed and it was near to water. Seemed to have a good life. It used to play with the cat. Sadly it got run over by a car.

I wonder if the introduction of minke effected otters; there’s a river near me in Donegal that suposedly had a couple recently.

near indefinitely.
I hear traditional methods did little damage and a bog could last indefinitely by renewing itself.
The harvesting done by BnM(strip off the top layer killing everything) and professional harvesters(who claim to be small time locals) is more destructive as it destroys the habitat but… most of the damage has been done by better irrigation throughout the island. if the argicultural land around a bog is drier than it was 400 years ago then the bog dries out too.
the like of clara bog will probably survive due to it’s unique topography but most other bogs will dry out due to the farmland around them.
Ireland isn’t the country it was 500 years ago. It’s got to the stage where conservationists want to stop large areas of the country which have good drainage from draining to recreate fenn.

The Norfolk Broads used to be bogland, but was completely worked out over several centuries, so yes if over-exploited it will go!

Thanks, the drainage thing is interesting. All I know of bogs is what I was dragged to back in the day, they were only small and thinking of it now the landscape or area didn’t seem damaged and these would have been areas being used for donkeys years.
It seems the danger may be a one size fits all categorisation for all bogs.

I could google it, but I thought it better to ask brethern on here who are into ornitology, what is the difference (there is one I assume) between a pheasant and a grouse? I think there are pheasant in the field behind my house I’ve seen a bird with smaller ones near it that look like a picture on a whiskey bottle whose name escapes me now. What is the bird behind my house?

YorkieBar, this might help you feel better about it :smiley:

Source: irserver.ucd.ie/dspace/bitstream/10197/2301/3/Tuohy%20et%20al-2009-Burning%20Peat%20In%20Ireland-Final%20Draft.pdf

The Famous Grouse. Not a bad dram. Wait a minute, what was the question again? XD

Well for a start a pheasant has a much longer tail than a grouse.

Pheasant has a paler flesh and is slightly fattier, while grouse is darker, has a more meaty flavour and if overcooked tends to be rather tough.
Also, grice are mainly upland birds, mostly living on open moorland, while pheasants generally live at lower altitudes with light tree cover. You’d often see pheasants in farmland with plenty of hedgerows or even in large open urban parks

If you live in a lowland area and it was much smaller than the pheasant, about the size of a large wood pigeon, it might have been a partridge (paler flesh again and a much more delicate, sweeter flavour). Grouse is still an option though, even here.

We were on a car rally once and one of the guys in a Lotus Elan (the 80’s type, not the nice ones!) hit a pheasant…they make a fair impact

Saw an otter and loads of dragonflies last week, so not extinct yet.

Bog habitats are almost gone. The one in Clara has funding to preserve it from a dutch group afaik. They got rid of all theirs, and want us to preserve at least one site.

My wife ran over a partridge while driving over the hills near Pettigo, Donegal. Really lovely bird, - my wife, not the partridge, - it was a terrible mess.

Why do they want to preserve it from a Dutch group? What were the Dutch group going to redevelop it? :angry: