The annual celebration of biodiversity returns to the Burren this May with a wide range of events on offer every weekend of May to explore the Burren’s rich diversity of plants, flowers, and insects at the height of their seasonal splendour.
This year the festival will have a musical start on the evening of Friday 28th April in Seamount College Kinvara, with the screening of the award winning RTE 1 documentary ‘Note to Nature’ in the company of its director Cepa Giblin. The film which is described as ‘a love letter to wild Ireland and a call to action from Ireland’s most talented performers’, will be preceded by a performance of ‘Flutter, Fossil, Fox’ by the local Coole Harmonies choir.
On the evening of Sat 29th April in Kinvara Community Centre, ornithologist Sean Ronayne will share fascinating insights into the secret world of bird songs and his mission to record all of Ireland’s birds. These events along with a Dawn Chorus walk led by naturalist and artist Gordon D’Arcy on Sun 20th April, will be of interest to bird lovers and music lovers alike as they take place at the May bank holiday weekend alongside Kinvara’s annual music festival – the Cuckoo Fleadh.
Outdoor events over the month include field trips to explore plants, flowers, butterflies, bats, woodlands, ponds, gardens, and lakes as well as family walks and games to enjoy the Burren’s bugs, blooms, bees, and moths in the company of ecologists and specialist walk leaders. The indoor events include a ‘Bio-based Materials Art Workshop’ at Burren College of Art on Sat 20th May, ‘The Art of Perfume’ workshop at The Burren Perfumery on Sat 27th May, a talk on ‘The old Irish goat & conservation grazing’ with goat herder Melissa Jeuken on Sat 20th May, and screening of ‘Sammy – A Pine Marten Story’, on the rescue & release of a pine marten in Clare on Sat 6th May. A webinar on ‘The Irish Hare’ with Karina Dingerkus, on 10th of May will take a look at the Irish hare in our farming and cultural landscape.
The festival will culminate on the last weekend of May with a ‘Bioblitz’ on a Burren farm where participants can help ecologists in recording flora of a beautifully diverse north Burren farm on Sat 27th May and a ‘Revisit to the location of the Burren Winterage Cattle Drive’ on Sun 28th May to enjoy the arrival of the bounty of wildflowers made possible by the farming practice of winter grazing.
Áine Bird, Coordinator of Burrenbeo Trust says, ‘When it comes to ecological wealth and diversity, the Burren has few parallels elsewhere in Ireland, making it a fitting landscape for learning, inspiration, and celebration. The events of Burren in Bloom give us all an opportunity to come together as a community and enjoy this but also draw our attention to the threats faced by biodiversity worldwide, and our shared role in reversing the biodiversity declines’.
While many of the events are free, nominal costs apply to some and booking in advance is essential for all events through www.burreninbloom.com. Burren in Bloom is coordinated by the Burrenbeo Trust and supported by The Heritage Council under the Heritage Capacity Fund 2023.