Wildlife of Ireland

Fauna of Ireland (Wikipedia)

Only 26 land mammal species are native to Ireland, because it was isolated from the European mainland by rising sea levels after the Midlandian Ice Age.In the Ice age (which include warm spells) mammals include the Woolly Mammoth, Wild Horse, Giant Deer, Brown Bear, Spotted Hyena, Arctic Lemming, Norway Lemming, Arctic Fox, European Beaver, Wolf, Eurasian Lynx and Reindeer flourished or migrated depending on the degree of cold.

Some species, such as the red fox, European hedgehog, stoat, otter, pygmy shrew and badger are common, whereas others, like the Irish hare, red deer and pine marten are less common and generally seen only in certain national parks and nature reserves around the island. Some introduced species have become thoroughly naturalised, e.g. the European rabbit, gray squirrel and brown rat. In addition, seven species of bat are found in Ireland.

Only one land reptile is native to the country, the viviparous (common) lizard. Several sea turtles are found offshore. Three amphibians are found in Ireland, the common European brown frog, the smooth newt and the natterjack toad. There are questions over whether the frog is actually native to Ireland, with some historic accounts telling that the frog was introduced in the 18th century. The natterjack toad is only found in a few localised sites in County Kerry and west Cork. For atlases see Atlases of the flora and fauna of Britain and Ireland

More sea eagles released in Kerry

A further nine white-tailed sea eagle chicks brought to Ireland from Norway have been released into Killarney National Park.

The Golden Eagle Trust, which operates the sea eagle reintroduction programme, said it plans to release another 13 juvenile birds later this year.

Irish Species Register

Biodiversity Ireland

Ireland Wildlife – Overview

National Parks and Wildlife Service

Whales & Dolphins in Ireland

Habitas Ulster Museum Note some parts of this extensive website relate to Northern Ireland only.