The Irish Wildlife Rehabilitation conference – happening this weekend in Slane. Pete the Vet Podcast on Pat Kenny Show

This Saturday 27th October, I will be speaking at the 2018 Irish Wildlife Rehabilitation conference which is taking place in Slane, Co Meath. Listen to the podcast below to find out more

The Irish Wildlife Rehabilitation conference

A range of topics will be covered from the simplest (what do I do if I find an injured wild animal) to the particular (rescue and rehabilitation seals) to the specific (care and rearing of newborn animals ). My own topic covers the broadest question: five reasons why it’s worth rescuing wildlife
Many folk believe it’s wrong to try to rescue wildlife – they see this as sentimentality. Worse, they believe that it is harmful: by rescuing wildlife, they believe that humans are interfering with nature. By saving weaklings, we may stop evolutionary forces, encouraging survival of the weakest rather than survival of the fittest. We run the risk then of creating wildlife species that are less able to survive without human help.
There is some truth in this, but my arguments are that it is still worth helping individual animals.
First, the reason why many animals need rescuing is human interference. From hedgehogs caught in fast food containers to swans that have flown into overhead power lines to seals struck by boats, there’s a long list of human causes of animal trauma.
Second, there are other good reasons for helping afflicted animals

  1. Compassion for the individual and in the interest of creating a kinder society genreally
  2. Saving endangered species
  3. Using lessons from saving un-endangered species to gain skills that can later be used for endangered species
  4. To highlight the importance of liking after our environment

Members of the public are welcome to attend – cost will be €75 for the day (€50 for retired/[unemployed/students)
Fee includes lunch and refreshments as well as a delegate goodie bag.

For those who can’t come, see or for good information about what to do if you find a wildlife casualty.

These are some of the endangered mammals and birds in Ireland: it’s especially important to conserve these:

  • Otter
  • Irish Hare
  • Red Squirrel
  • All Bat species- Including Whiskered Bat, Natterer’s Bat, Daubenton’s Bat, Leisler’s Bat and the Pipistrelles
  • Natterjack toad.
  • Fresh Water Pearl Mussel
  • Kerry Slug

Birdwatch Ireland and RSPB Northern Ireland have agreed a list of priority bird species for conservation action on the island of Ireland.

This Red List which means birds of high conservation concern include

  • Hen harrier
  • Grey partridge
  • Corncrake
  • Barn Owl
  • Yellowhammer
  • Black-necked Grebe
  • Common Scoter
  • Red Grouse
  • Quail
  • Lapwing
  • Curlew
  • Red-necked Phalarope
  • Roseate Tern
  • Nightjar
  • Ring Ouzel
  • Chough
  • Twite
  • Corn Bunting


An alternative way of looking at this is to consider the law. The Wildlife Act is the principle mechanism for the legislative protection of wildlife in Ireland. It outlines strict protection for species that have significant conservation value. In summary, the Act protects species from injury, disturbance and damage to breeding and resting sites. All species listed in the Act must therefore be a material consideration in the planning process. IT MAKES SENSE THAT SUCH SPECIES SHOULD ALSO BE RESCUED AND REHABILITATED IF IN TROUBLE.

To listen to the podcast, click on the play button below.


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