Issue 105, June 2018
Welcome to the June 2018 issue of eWings, BirdWatch Ireland's email newsletter.
If you are one of the many people whom we met at the Bloom festival in the Phoenix Park in Dublin earlier this month and are now receiving our free eWings email newsletter for the first time, welcome! We hope you enjoy reading about BirdWatch Ireland's work each month and that you will help us to spread our conservation message. eWings is available free to anyone who wishes to receive it, both members and non-members alike.

We are delighted that hundreds of new members have chosen to join BirdWatch Ireland this summer, both at Bloom and at our other summer events. If you are one of these new members, we would like to extend an especially warm welcome to you. As Ireland's largest and most active wildlife conservation charity, we are extremely grateful that you have chosen to give us your support.

If you are a new member, we especially hope that you will enjoy receiving Wings, our 36-page quarterly membership magazine: the next issue will be mailed to you in early August. We also hope that you take the opportunity to attend some of our local branch events across the country.

Please, if you are reading this and are not currently a BirdWatch Ireland member, why not join us today and help to support our vital conservation work? It will cost you roughly the price of a cup of coffee per month, and it makes an enormous difference for Ireland's birds and other wildlife.
To view the articles and news below in full, simply click on the link displayed at the bottom of each summary.
BirdWatch Ireland's 2017 Annual Report now available
BirdWatch Ireland's AGM was held on Saturday 16th June, at the Midlands Park Hotel in Portlaoise, Co. Laois. Thank you to all of the members who came along on the day. It was great to see so many of you there and especially to have such good representation from across our local branch network. BirdWatch Ireland's 2017 Annual Report was launched at the meeting and offers a fascinating summary of what was a very busy year for the organisation: it is now available for download in PDF format and is well worth a read.
Download BirdWatch Ireland's 2017 Annual Report (PDF: 1.76MB)
The time of year when thoughts turn to terns
Dublin's Rockabill Island is home to one of Ireland's most successful conservation projects. For almost 30 years BirdWatch Ireland, with support from NPWS, has been working hard to conserve and grow the population of Roseate Terns, one of Europe's rarest and most vulnerable seabird species. Rockabill is now home to Europe's largest colony of these beautiful birds, and our work there forms a key part of the Roseate Tern EU LIFE Project.

For the past couple of months our wardens on the remote island have been bringing the story of the terns to the wider world through their Rockablog. If you would like to know more about their work and the ups and downs of living amongst thousands of screaming seabirds, this is the blog for you! (Photo: Roseate Tern chick by Brian Burke)
Read the lastest news from Rockabill on our Rockblog, and check back for regular updates
The Complete Field Guide to Ireland's Birds
If you are looking for a great-value field guide to help you identify Ireland's rich birdlife, look no further! The Complete Field Guide to Ireland's Birds by Eric Dempsey and Michael O'Clery is a perennial best-seller in the BirdWatch Ireland shop, and for very good reason. This superb 320 page book describes and illustrates almost 370 species, detailing key identification features, voice, diet, habitat and status in Ireland, and also includes up-to-date distribution maps. In addition, over 100 of Ireland's rarest birds are also covered. It can easily fit into a pocket or a rucksack, making it ideal for use in the field.
Buy The Complete Field Guide to Ireland's Birds from our online shop for just €20, plus P&P
Merlin Survey 2018: keeping track of one of our most elusive birds
The Merlin, our smallest bird of prey, is without doubt one of the most challenging birds to survey and observe in the Irish countryside. Despite this, the first survey for breeding Merlins within Special Protection Areas is well underway, led by BirdWatch Ireland and the Irish Raptor Study Group and overseen by the National Parks and Wildlife Service. Over the past few months, dedicated surveyors have battled the deflation and frustration which inevitably accompany Merlin survey work in an attempt to find breeding Merlins in the six SPAs in the uplands of Cos. Wicklow, Galway, Clare, Mayo and Donegal.
(Photo: Merlin by Shay Connolly)
Learn more about our current efforts to survey Merlins and how you might be able to help
From Seabirds to Songbirds: our Cape Clear birdwatching course
We are pleased to announce that this autumn our very own Dick Coombes will once again be leading his extremely popular From Seabirds to Songbirds birdwatching course on Cape Clear Island, off the coast of West Cork. Based in BirdWatch Ireland's Cape Clear Bird Observatory, this year's course will run from 10th to 14th September and will cost €195 per person. It will offer a fascinating insight into the world of migration and the joys of watching seabirds, all delivered with Dick's famous enthusiasm and humour.

Accommodation will also be available at the observatory during the course for €25 per person, per night, or just €22 for BirdWatch Ireland members.
Click for more information on our Cape Clear birdwatching course and to book your place
Job opportunity: Retail Administrator
BirdWatch Ireland is looking to recruit a Retail Administrator. This is a full-time six-month fixed-term contract position, and the successful candidate will be based in our head office in Kilcoole, Co. Wicklow. The main duties will include running the BirdWatch Ireland shop and promoting the organisation and its work through sales and retail activity.

The ideal candidate will be someone who has excellent proven retail experience and enjoys working as part of a team. References will be required. Some knowledge of the Not-For-Profit sector and knowledge of birds and bird conservation would be a bonus. The deadline for applications is 17:00 on Friday 6th July.
Visit our Jobs page for full details and to download an application form for the Retail Administrator position
Ireland has been experiencing some very hot weather in recent days. Birds can struggle during prolonged spells of high temperatures, especially when natural water sources such as ponds, puddles and streams dry up. They need water both to drink and to bathe, and young birds that have just recently left the nest are particularly vulnerable to water shortages.

With this in mind, we would like to encourage you to put out water for your garden birds. Even just a simple dish on the ground can make a big difference: please make sure to put it in a location where the birds can easily spot predators approaching, however.

To provide more information on how you can help to care for birds in your garden and around your home, we have produced a special series of factsheets that should prove very useful.

We have one additional piece of news. The islands off Dalkey in south Co. Dublin host an amazing array of biodiversity. To celebrate this and to highlight our Dalkey Tern Conservation Project, which is funded as part of the EU LIFE Roseate Tern Project, public "tern-watch" events are in full swing at Coliemore Harbour from 17:00 to 20:00 each Tuesday evening until the end of July. These evening events are co-hosted by the South Dublin Branch of BirdWatch Ireland and are completely free of charge.

Free Sunday morning tern-viewing sessions at Coliemore Harbour will also run from 11:00 to 13:00 on both 1st and 15th July, followed by guided nature walks on Dalkey Island itself. Walks begin at 14:30, 15:30 and 16:30 pm on the landing slip on Dalkey Island: for more details, please click here.

See you again next month!

Niall Hatch
Public Relations, Branches & Development Officer

P.S. Would you like to join as a member today and/or make a donation to support our vital conservation work?
  BirdWatch Ireland
Unit 20, Block D
Bullford Business Campus
Co. Wicklow
A63 RW83
Tel: (+353)-(0)1-2819878

BirdWatch Ireland is the trading name of the Irish Wildbird Conservancy, a company limited by guarantee and registered in Ireland, no. 116468. Registered Charity no. 5703.
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