Dick Warner

The notion that magpies steal shiny objects is ancient and widespread

On a sunny evening recently my son and his housemates decided to have a barbecue in their back garden. 

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Swans are bluffers and can't actually hurt you

I’M NOT afraid of swans. I know they’re consummate bluffers and that although they put on a great show of aggression they can’t actually hurt you.

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Spirits lifted by cuckoo

ON a cold day at the end of April, I was out in my garden feeling mildly depressed, writes Dick Warner

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It's much cheaper and more satisfying to build your own insect hotel

ECOLOGY is a relatively modern science, writes Dick Warner

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Dandelion days are here again

‘April brings the sweet spring showers, On and on, for hours and hours.’ Lines written by Michael Flanders in ‘A Song of the Weather’ in 1956, writes Dick Warner

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Siskins, my kinda birds

This winter there were a couple of absentees from my bird feeders. One species that I missed was the siskin.

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Life is tough for a pygmy shrew in Ireland

There was a corpse on the path in front of me. A very small corpse. 

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Nature primed to entice this spring

EASTER is the spring festival, writes Dick Warner

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On watch for swallows set to return for spring

I’M on watch. Some time in the next two to three weeks, the swallows will return and start hawking for spring midges over the 10-acre field beside the house, writes Dick Warner.

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Seeds bursting to life

At this time of year I spend a lot of time in my greenhouse sowing seeds and, if and when they germinate, looking after the seedlings.

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Shamrock is a great diet boost for birds

THE pasture field outside my study window has become a parade ground for birds. 

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The march of the parakeet

My son is just back from a trip to Istanbul, a city I’ve never visited myself. When he came round to tell us about the trip and show off his photos I was intrigued by his account of seeing wild parrots in one of the city parks, writes Dick Warner.

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Listen up if you hear the drumming of a woodpecker

Most people with an interest in birds are aware of the exciting news that about a decade ago great spotted woodpeckers arrived in Ireland and that since then they have been breeding and spreading. 

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Welcome eye for vagrants

I had a dream about a pelican last night. It was all a bit odd, as dreams often are. 

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If you are interested in nature these are the websites you need to know about

The business of being a naturalist, whether professional or amateur, has been transformed by modern technology, writes Dick Warner.

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Plants can provide a forecast for weather and point to climate change

PHENOLOGY, the study of seasonal changes in living things, measures the timing of events like the arrival of migratory birds, the breaking of buds, the spawning of frogs and the falling of autumn leaves, writes Dick Warner

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February a harsh month weather wise but Spring is edging closer

February is an odd month, writes Dick Warner

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Feeding is a boost for birds and increases survival rates

FEEDING garden birds is becoming increasingly popular in Ireland.

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Black vultures are alive and well in parts of Europe

I’m just back from a brief holiday in Spain, spent in the mountains of Andalucia, inland from Malaga.

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Our bad record on emissions makes our challenge tougher

Our international obligations to reduce this country’s contribution to global climate change pose a real and immediate challenge, writes Dick Warner

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Mistle thrush sings to welcome stretch in evening

The first, barely perceptible, stretch in the evenings is celebrated by the mistle thrush. 

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