MKO recently organised and took part in the Mountbellew Bioblitz and Biodiversity Festival, which took place on the 26th and 27th May. The team of ecologists, students and helpers recorded over 520 species of plant and animal during a 24 hour period and still found the time to run a series of interesting and informative talks and guided walks explaining what they do to survey for biodiversity in all its forms. The event was well attended by public from the Mountbellew area and further afield and was hosted by the Holy Rosary College in Mountbellew. Over 350 plant species were recorded along with almost 50 bird species, 16 mammal species and 40 species of butterfly and moth. This shows the incredible diversity of natural life in the Mountbellew area and provides a baseline, to which further species can be added as they are recorded in the future. It also acts as a measure of biodiversity in 2023 against which any changes can be measured. The event introduced the students of Holy Rosary College, Mountbellew to the methods used for recording the flora and fauna of their local area and highlighted the potential for a career as an ecologist.
The team from MKO, Bord na Móna, HRC, Coillte, National Parks and Wildlife Service, University of Galway, Oran Ecology, Galway County Council, The Living Bog, Beith Tree Consultancy and some incredible volunteers from the local area, all had a fantastic day doing what they do best – getting outside and recording wildlife in the sunshine.