Press Release: 17th August 2015:
Top bog attraction in Kildare restored and to be showcased during Heritage Week
The only part of the Bog of Allen protected in Kildare will be on show for Heritage Week 2015. With the support of Kildare County Council under the Community Heritage Grant Scheme 2015, trampling on the bog has been repaired over the summer in preparation for Heritage Week. There will be an open day on the bog between 2-5pm on Sunday 23rd of August.
Lodge bog is an area of raised bog that is used primarily for education. Over the years some areas of the bog had been degraded due to trampling by visitors to the site. Sphagnum mosses are the building block of bogs. They control their environment by retaining waterlogged conditions and acidifying it to a point where decomposition is severely decreased. This results in the accumulation of peat. Sphagnum mosses are sensitive to trampling. For example it takes 3 years for a footprint to disappear. Severe trampling kills Sphagnum entirely. The bare peat dries and is hostile to recolonization of the moss. It needs a helping hand. Peatland restoration techniques in Canada focus on actively introducing Sphagnum moss on to areas in need of restoration. Moss is harvested from a donor site on an undisturbed peatland and then spread over the bare peat area. Following this, straw is spread over the moss. This acts to keep the moss fragments wet during dry periods by preventing evaporation and regulating temperature with the changing seasons.
“Peatlands in Ireland hold many values for us. They are a source of fuel, they are used as an amenity, they support diverse communities of specially adapted plants and animals and provide many natural regulating functions such as flood control and carbon storage.” says Katie Geraghty, IPCC’s Campaign Officer. “I hope as many people as possible will join me and the Irish Peatland Conservation Council on Sunday 23rd August between 2-5pm at the Bog of Allen Nature Centre and celebrate these wonderful, wet, open and natural landscapes of Ireland” she added.
This open day is a free event, it will include a trip to Lodge where there will be a talk on the process of raised bog restoration and the importance of conserving and restoring these unique habitats. There will also be tours of our peatland museum, our carnivorous plant exhibition, and our wonderful wildlife gardens. It will be a fun family event and there will be plenty of nature activities for the children such as, pond dipping and frog and newt searches. Picnics are welcome and there will be light refreshments provided at the Bog of Allen Nature Centre.
The Irish Peatland Conservation Council (IPCC) is a charity set up to conserve a representative sample of Irish peatlands for future generations to enjoy. The Bog of Allen Nature Centre is the headquarters of the IPCC and is a centre of excellence in peatland education, conservation and research.
For further information please contact: