Amazing Abbeyleix Bog set for a national showcase

Amazing Abbeyleix Bog set for a national showcase
Express Reporternews@leinsterexpress.ieTwitter: @laoisnews

The achievement of all involved with Abbeyleix Bog is set to be the centrepiece of the launch of a national week of activities to promote our natural surroundings.

The amenity has been handpicked as the location for the launch of National Biodiversity Week 2018, by the Irish Environmental Network on Saturday, May 19.

Two of RTÉ's leading environmental broadcasters, Éanna Ní Lamhna (Mooney Goes Wild) and Anja Murray (Eco Eye) will travel to Abbeyleix for the launch.

On the day Chris Uys of the Abbeyleix Bog Project and Ray Harte of Portlaoise Men's Shed will discuss the community-led initiatives involved in regenerating the bog and protecting endangered species living on this unique and biodiversity-rich bog.

During a tour of the bog Chris will discuss the work of the amazing volunteer team protecting and enriching biodiversity on the bog.

Trevor Halpin of Groundwork will explain rhododendron control and the impact of invasive species on bog biodiversity.

During the tour, Denise O'Meara of the Waterford Institute of Technology and Ruth Hanniffy of the Vincent Wildlife Trust will speak on Pine Marten monitoring on the bog and their important role in the ecosystem

Kieran Flood of the Irish Wildlife Trust will focus on using bog vegetation to enhance pollinator habitats and the importance of pollinators in Irish society

Dr Shane Regan and Michael Swenson from Trinity College Dublin will talk on the bog's value as a carbon sink

The exciting day will be capped off with a wonderful dusk chorus guided by Hugh Shepherd of the local branch of BirdWatch Ireland from 7.30pm to 9.30pm.

The main goal of the Abbeyleix Bog Project is to conserve and protect the bog that was once severely threatened by peat harvesting.

Today, the local community manages the Bog as an open access amenity. The conservation project is developed and operated by volunteers.

National Biodiversity Week will take place from the May 19th to 27th .

This year's theme is Celebrating 25 Years of Action for Biodiversity.

Over the course of nine days, over 50 free events will take place all across the country, celebrating Ireland's diverse species and natural habitats.