Notification of Second Round of Public Consultation on Non-native Species Risk Assessments

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Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) and the National Biodiversity Data Centre (Data Centre) have been tasked by the National Parks and Wildlife Service to undertake risk assessments on certain non-native species listed in the Third Schedule to the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011 (SI 477/2011; http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/2011/en/si/0477.html). The risk assessments provide evidence-based knowledge that will be used by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht in the implementation of Regulations 49, 50 and 74. These regulations are concerned with the prohibition on the introduction, dispersal, trading and keeping of certain non-native species and associated licensing requirements that may apply.

Each risk assessment completed (refer to list below) has undergone an internal review and an external expert review and is now available for stakeholder and public consultation on the project website www.nonnativespecies.ie. As such, we invite any interested parties to make submissions on these completed risk assessments which are available for comment for a two-week period after publication.

Additional information on the Non-native Species Risk Assessment Project can be found on the project website www.nonnativespecies.ie . Guidance information on the licensing requirements can be viewed at http://nonnativespecies.ie/notices-and-documentation/

The following risk assessments are now available for comment until the 06/08/2014:

  • Allium triquetrum (Three-cornered Leek)
  • Corbicula fluminea (Asian Clam)
  • Egeria densa (Large-flowered Waterweed)
  • Hydrocotyle ranunculoides (Floating Pennywort)
  • Impatiens glandulifera (Himalayan Balsam)
  • Ludwigia spp. (Water Primroses)
  • Lysichiton americanus (American Skunk-cabbage)
  • Myriophyllum aquaticum (Parrot’s Feather)

The following risk assessments will be available for comment shortly:

  • Carpobrotus edulis (Hottentot-fig)
  • Elodea canadensis (Canadian Pondweed)
  • Hippophae rhamnoides (Sea-buckthorn)
  • Juncus planifolius (Broad-leaved Rush)
  • Hyacinthoides hispanica (including H. non-scripta x H. hispanica) (Spanish Bluebell)
  • Persicaria perfoliata (Mile-a-minute Weed)
  • Rubus spectabilis (Salmonberry)

 

Regards,

 

The Non-native Species Project Team

 

Irish student wins prestigious GBIF’s Young Researchers Award 2014

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Caoimhe Marshall, a master’s student at UCD, is the recipient of this year’s Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) Young Researchers Award. She is one of the two 2014 winners of the annual €4,000 award granted to graduate students whose project demonstrates research innovation and originality, the potential for significant contributions to biodiversity science, and the creative use of data published through GBIF. Caoimhe’s project will analyse the National Plant Database, held by the National Biodiversity Data Centre, to detect biases and identify gaps in spatial recording effort. This analysis will be instrumental in gaining a greater understanding of how recording effort influences observed species distribution patterns in large national datasets, and enable the Data Centre to develop a plant recording strategy to target identified gaps.  If the method proves successful, it will be adopted by the Data Centre as a model for identifying gaps other national databases.

The project is a collaboration between the National Biodiversity Data Centre and University College Dublin, and supervised by Dr. Jon Yearsley at the  School of Biology & Environmental Science.

Rare bumblebee rediscovered after 88 years

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Southern cuckoo bumblebee (Bombus vestalis). Photo: Nick Owens

A rare bumblebee species not sighted since 1926 has been recorded in a park in Rathfarnham, Dublin. Eddie Hill, a gardener at St. Enda’s Park and avid bumblebee recorder for the National Bumblebee Monitoring Scheme, spotted the unusual looking bees feeding on flowers last week within the grounds of the park.  Having sent photographs and sent two specimens to the National Biodiversity Data Centre, ecologists Dr. Tomás Murray and Dr. Úna Fitzpatrick confirmed that it was the rare Southern cuckoo bumblebee, a species not recorded in Ireland for 88 years.

Eddie Hill said: “I’ve been interested in bumblebees for the past two years after learning how to identify them at a National Bumblebee Monitoring Scheme workshop.  With my work, I’m in St. Enda’s most days, so when I saw these bees pollinating flowers in the park, I just knew they were different.”

Ecologist Dr. Tomás Murray, project co-ordinator of the Bumblebee Monitoring Scheme, said: “Overall, 30% of the 102 species of bee are endangered and, given how long it’s been since this bee was recorded, we thought we’d never see it again.  Our recorders in the monitoring scheme have been passing on photos of suspected sightings, so we did get a little excited when we received Eddie’s photos, but were delighted when we confirmed it was the Southern cuckoo bumblebee, Bombus vestalis.”

The Southern cuckoo bumblebee was last recorded near Bagenalstown, Co. Carlow, in 1926 by Arthur Wilson Stelfox, a renowned entomologist working in the National Museum in Dublin at the time.  That it hasn’t been recorded since begs the question: where has it been?  “Like other cuckoo bees, it’s unusual in the sense that it doesn’t make its own nest, but invades a host bee’s nest, kills the queen, then uses the host workforce to rear its young.  Being what is known as a ‘social parasite’, it will always have a much lower population size than its host, making it more vulnerable to extinction.”, added Murray. “So it could be that it almost died out, but is now expanding again, or that it has simply been rare, but overlooked as, up until the National Bumblebee Monitoring Scheme, there haven’t been enough skilled people looking for it.”

Run and maintained by the Office of Public Works, St. Enda’s Park consists of nearly 50 acres of parkland with a diversity of flora and fauna, as well as the Pádraig Pearse Museum, visitor centre and a nature study room.  Eddie Hill knows of at least six bumblebee nests currently within the grounds, illustrating how valuable these green spaces are within urban areas in Ireland.  “I’ve successfully roped many of my colleagues in work into photographing insects for me, so now that I have found such a lovely rare bumblebee, we’ve all been given a boost to go out and try to record a good few more species for the Data Centre!”

For further information contact: Dr. Tomás Murray, National Biodiversity Data Centre

Tel.: +353-51-306241

Email: tmurray@biodiversityireland.ie

Notification of Public Consultation on Non-native Species Risk Assessments and Public Information Meetings on Non-native Species Regulations

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Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) and the National Biodiversity Data Centre (Data Centre) have been tasked by the National Parks and Wildlife Service to undertake risk assessments on certain non-native species listed in the Third Schedule to the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011 (SI 477/2011; http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/2011/en/si/0477.html). The risk assessments provide evidence-based knowledge that will be used by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht in the implementation of Regulations 49, 50 and 74. These regulations are concerned with the prohibition on the introduction, dispersal, trading and keeping of certain non-native species and associated licensing requirements that may apply.

To date, each risk assessment completed (refer to list below) has undergone an internal review and an external expert review and is now available for stakeholder and public consultation on the project website www.nonnativespecies.ie.  As such, we invite any interested parties to make submissions on these completed risk assessments which are available for comment for a two-week period after publication.

Further to this, three public meetings will take place to inform interested stakeholders and the general public about the regulations and associated licensing requirements as follows:

 

  • 20th May and 21st May 2014 (19:30 – 21:00): Dublin – Inland Fisheries Ireland  Head Office – 3044 Lake Drive, Citywest Business Campus, Dublin; and
  • 22nd May 2014 (19:30 – 21:00):  Athlone – Athlone Springs Hotel, Monksland, Athlone, Co. Westmeath.

Project staff will also be available to meet in person or receive calls from stakeholders between 11:00 and 17:00 on each of the above days by appointment only to receive consultation on matters pertaining to the risk assessments or licensing requirements.  Please call +353 87 0513116 during business hours to make such an appointment.

Additional information on the Non-native Species Risk Assessment Project can be found on the project website  www.nonnativespecies.ie .  Guidance information on the licensing requirements can be viewed at http://nonnativespecies.ie/notices-and-documentation/

The following risk assessments are available for comment until the 24th May 2014:

Aponogeton distachyos (Cape Pondweed)

Astacus astacus (Noble Crayfish)

Astacus leptodactylus (Turkish Crayfish)

Azolla filiculoides (Water Fern)

Bufo bufo (Common Toad)

Capreolus capreolus (Roe Deer)

Crassula helmsii (Australian Swamp Stonecrop)

Crepidula fornicata (Slipper Limpet)

Cyprinus carpio (Common Carp)

Elodea nuttallii (Nuttall’s Pondweed)

Gunnera manicata (Brazilian Giant-rhubarb)

Gunnera tinctoria (Giant-rhubarb)

Hydropotes inermis (Chinese Water Deer)

Lagarosiphon major (Curly-leaved Waterweed)

Leuciscus cephalus  (Chub)

Lithobates catesbeianu (American Bullfrog)

Muntiacus reevesi (Muntjac Deer)

Myriophyllum aquaticum (Parrots Feather)

Nymphoides peltata (Fringed Water-lily)

Orconectes limosus (Spiny-cheek Crayfish)

Pacifastacus leniusculus (Signal Crayfish)

Pistia stratiotes (Water Lettuce)

Procambarus clarkii (Red Swamp Crayfish) 

Procambarus spp. (Marbled Crayfish) 

Rhododendron ponticum (including R. x superponticum) (Rhododendron)

Strix aluco (Tawny Owl)

Sus scrofa (Wild Boar)

Tamias sibiricus (Siberian Chipmunk)

 

The following risk assessments are not yet available for comment:

 

Allium triquetrum (Three-cornered Leek)

Carpobrotus edulis (Hottentot-fig)

Corbicula fluminea (Asian River Clam)

Egeria densa (Large-flowered Waterweed)

Elodea canadensis (Canadian Pondweed)

Hippophae rhamnoides (Sea-buckthorn)

Hyacinthoides hispanica (including H. non-scripta x H. hispanica) (Spanish Bluebell)

Hydrocotyle ranunculoides (Floating Pennywort)

Impatiens glandulifera (Himalayan Balsam)

Juncus planifolius (Broad-leaved Rush)

Ludwigia (L. grandiflora, L. peploides and L. hexapetala) (Water-primrose)

Lysichiton americanus (American Skunk-cabbage)

Persicaria perfoliata (Mile-a-minute Weed)

Rubus spectabilis (Salmonberry)

 

Regards,

The Non-native Species Project Team

 

 

 

Non-Native Species Risk Assessment Project

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Notification of Public Consultation on Non-native Species Risk Assessments and Public Information Meetings on Non-native Species Regulations

Inland Fisheries Ireland (IFI) and the National Biodiversity Data Centre (Data Centre) have been tasked by the National Parks and Wildlife Service to undertake risk assessments on certain non-native species listed in the Third Schedule to the European Communities (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011 (SI 477/2011; http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/2011/en/si/0477.html). The risk assessments provide evidence-based knowledge that will be used by the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht in the implementation of Regulations 49, 50 and 74. These regulations are concerned with the prohibition on the introduction, dispersal, trading and keeping of certain non-native species and associated licensing requirements that may apply.

 

To date, each risk assessment completed (refer to list below) has undergone an internal review and an external expert review and is now available for stakeholder and public consultation on the project website www.nonnativespecies.ie.  As such, we invite any interested parties to make submissions on these completed Risk Assessments which are available for comment for a two-week period after publication.

 

Further to this, three public meetings will take place to inform interested stakeholders and the general public about the Regulations and associated licensing requirements as follows:

  • 20th May and 21st May 2014 (19:30 – 21:00): Dublin – Inland Fisheries Ireland  Head Office – 3044 Lake Drive, Citywest Business Campus, Dublin; and
  • 22nd May 2014 (19:30 – 21:00):  Athlone – Athlone Springs Hotel, Monksland, Athlone, Co. Westmeath.

Project staff will also be available to meet in person or receive calls from stakeholders between 11:00 and 17:00 on each of the above days by appointment only to receive consultation on matters pertaining to the risk assessments or licencing requirements.  Please call +353 87 0513116 during business hours to make such an appointment.

 

Additional information on the Non-native Species Risk Assessment Project can be found on the project website  www.nonnativespecies.ie . Guidance information on the licencing requirements can be viewed at http://nonnativespecies.ie/notices-and-documentation/

 

The following risk assessments are available for comment until the 24th May 2014:

Aponogeton distachyos (Cape Pondweed)

Astacus astacus (Noble Crayfish)

Astacus leptodactylus (Turkish Crayfish)

Azolla filiculoides (Water Fern)

Bufo bufo (Common Toad)

Capreolus capreolus (Roe Deer)

Crassula helmsii (Australian Swamp Stonecrop)

Crepidula fornicata (Slipper Limpet)

Cyprinus carpio (Carp)

Elodea nuttallii (Nuttall’s Pondweed)

Gunnera manicata (Brazilian Giant-rhubarb)

Gunnera tinctoria (Giant-rhubarb)

Hydropotes inermis (Chinese Water Deer)

Lagarosiphon major (Curly-leaved Waterweed)

Leuciscus cephalus  (Chub)

Lithobates catesbeianu (American Bullfrog)

Muntiacus reevesi (Muntjac Deer)

Myriophyllum aquaticum (Parrots Feather)

Nymphoides peltata (Fringed Water-lily)

Orconectes limosus (Spiny-cheek Crayfish)

Pacifastacus leniusculus (Signal Crayfish)

Pistia stratiotes (Water Lettuce)

Procambarus clarkii (Red Swamp Crayfish) 

Procambarus spp. (Marbled Crayfish) 

Rhododendron ponticum (including R. x superponticum) (Rhododendron)

Strix aluco (Tawny Owl)

Sus scrofa (Wild Boar)

Tamias sibiricus (Siberian Chipmunk)

 

The following risk assessments are not yet available for comment:

Allium triquetrum (Three-cornered Leek)

Carpobrotus edulis  (Hottentot-fig)

Corbicula fluminea (Asian River Clam)

Egeria densa (Large-flowered Waterweed)

Elodea canadensis (Canadian Pondweed)

Hippophae rhamnoides (Sea-buckthorn)

Hyacinthoides hispanica (including H. non-scripta x H. hispanica) (Spanish Bluebell)

Hydrocotyle ranunculoides (Floating Pennywort)

Impatiens glandulifera (Himalayan Balsam)

Juncus planifolius (Broad-leaved Rush)

Ludwigia (L. grandiflora, L. peploides and L. hexapetala) (Water-primrose)

Lysichiton americanus (American Skunk-cabbage)

Persicaria perfoliata (Mile-a-minute Weed)

Rubus spectabilis (Salmonberry)

Ireland’s BioBlitz 2014: 23 & 24 May

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Irelands BioBlitz Logo

Ireland’s BioBlitz 2014

The National Biodiversity Data Centre is delighted to announce the four sites that will be competing in this year’s Ireland’s BioBlitz which will take place on 23 & 24 May. The sites are all extremely interesting heritage sites that provide a variety of habitats and interesting biodiversity. This should make for very competitive recording this year.

The four sites are Howth Head, Co. Dublin,  Glenarm Estate, Co. Antrim, Cong/Clonbur Woodlands on the Galway/Mayo border and Derrynane Historic Property, Co. Kerry. The Data Centre is very grateful to Fingal County Council, National Museums of Northern Ireland, Coillte and the Office of Public Works who are our partners in this years event.  Please see the BioBlitz website  http://bioblitz.biodiversityireland.ie/ for further details.

 

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Official Mark Colour

National Biodiversity Data Centre JobBridge Internship 2014 (INTE-829107)

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The National Biodiversity Data Centre is pleased to announce an exciting new opportunity for a highly motivated person to contribute to the work of the Centre in 2014. The post provides a suitable candidate with an opportunity to gain first-hand experience in working in a leading biodiversity Data Centre, learning about all aspects of biological recording, data management and biodiversity training, while contributing in a real way to increasing our knowledge base on Ireland’s biodiversity.

Candidates must be registered with the JobBridge National Internship Scheme http://www.jobbridge.ie/.

Data Centre Internship

The JobBridge Internship will be structured to enable the successful candidate gain experience of different aspects of the work programme of the Data Centre. The focus of this year’s JobBridge will be to provide the successful applicant with detailed training in vegetation and plant recording. This will include specialised one-to-one training involving sampling river vegetation on some of Ireland’s highest quality rivers in June and July.

Other work areas will include developing content for the Data Centre’s emerging Threatened and Protected Species website,

Assisting with the public consultation element of the Invasive Species Risk Assessments, and

Assisting with management of some of the Data Centre’s national databases.

The position is offered as part of the National Internship Scheme, JobBridge. The successful candidate will be provided with, specifically:

  • a deep insight into all aspects of the management of biodiversity data,
  • experience of project management in a dynamic work environment,
  • high quality training in specific biological recording software programmes and WordPress website content management system,
  • training in monitoring programmes run by the Centre,
  • opportunity to attend the extensive programme of training workshops for 2014,
  • participation in the many field outings and other events organised by the Data Centre.

The position is suited to candidates with training in the natural sciences and knowledge of biodiversity data. The internship would be for 9 months duration and based at the National Biodiversity Data Centre in Waterford. Candidates should have an interest in biodiversity, good attention to detail, good computer skills, and be able to work as part of a team. The internship will work closely with the Centre’s ecologists to provide guidance and support in the delivery of the work programme. Please note that this post will involve significant amount of fieldwork and travel to attend meetings.

To apply, please send a covering letter outlining why you are interested in applying for the internship, together with a Curriculum Vitae to National Biodiversity Data Centre, Carriganore, WIT West Campus, Waterford or email info@biodiversityireland.ie. Please mark your applications Biodiversity Internship 2014. The closing date for applications is Friday 4th April 2014.  A shortlist of suitable candidates will be made, and it is anticipated that shortlisted candidates will be invited for interview on Tuesday 15th April.

If you wish to obtain more details about the internships contact Dr. Liam Lysaght, Director, National

Biodiversity Data Centre. Telephone: 051 306240.

PLEASE NOTE THE CLOSING DATE FOR APPLICATIONS IS FRIDAY 4TH APRIL AND NOT FRIDAY 21 MARCH AS STATED ON THE JOBBRIDGE WEBSITE.

JobBridge Internship 2014 (2)

Latest news from the GBIF network

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GBIF

Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF)

The Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) is a network of 80 participants worldwide working on an open biodiversity data infrastructure, funded by governments. It allows anyone, anywhere to access data about all types of life on Earth, shared across national boundaries via the Internet. The National Biodiversity Data Centre is Ireland’s GBIF node and contributes Irish data to the more than 400 million biodiversity records mobilised through the GBIF data portal. To find out what is happening across the network view the latest issue of Gbits, GBIF’s newsletter here.

A more detailed presentation on GBIF participation can be downloaded here.

Programme announced: Annual Meeting of Irish Freshwater Biologists

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Annual Meeting of Irish Freshwater Biologists 2014

 When: Friday 7th March 2014

Where: University College Dublin

Organising committee: Dr Mary Kelly-Quinn (UCD), Dr Simon Harrison (UCC), Pascal Sweeney (Sweeney Consultancy), Dr Ian Donohue (TCD), Maria Walsh (National Biodiversity Data Centre).

The 2014 Annual Meeting of Irish Freshwater Biologists will feature three sessions:

Session 1: Papers on ‘Ecology of Small Waterbodies’

Papers from this session will be considered for a special issue of ‘Biology & Environment’.

Session 2: 10 minute presentations on well advanced research

Session 3: 5 minute presentations on new and ongoing research projects.

 

Advance registration and payment of the €20 non-refundable booking fee is necessary at:

http://www.biodiversityireland.ie/home-page/event-registration/.

Annual Meeting of Irish Freshwater Biologists_programme

Invasion of alien species to Ireland on the increase

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New report published by National Biodiversity Data Centre finds the rate of invasion of alien species to Ireland is increasing

Invasion of alien species to Ireland is on the increase with nearly four times more seen in the wild in the last century than the previous one. Help is needed to combat their threat to our biodiversity, economy and health.

  • 13% of the alien species are listed as invasive species which have a negative impact on our economy and biodiversity
  • The estimated annual cost of alien species to Ireland is €261 million
  • 31 identification sheets have been produced to help people identify some of the invasive species already in Ireland and others that might soon arrive
  • This is a call to everyone to help prevent their introduction to Ireland and the wild and to report sightings of them.

“We all have our part to play in protecting Ireland’s biodiversity and economy” says Colette O’Flynn. She continues, “with the worrying increasing trend in invasions we must carefully consider the types of plants and animals we are bringing into the country and be sure that we do not allow the invasive species to enter into the wild”. To aid with identifying and reporting sightings of these invasive species, the National Biodiversity Data Centre has produced 31 identification sheets and supported development of the Invasives Ireland phone app by Longford County Council. Interestingly, half of the 12 invasive species recorded between 2001 and 2010 were first seen and reported by members of the public. These included reports of Siberian chipmunk, Chinese mitten-crab and Harlequin ladybird.

The report Ireland’s invasive and non-native species – trends in introductions published today by the National Biodiversity Data Centre [Thursday, February 6th, 2014] reveals their increase in introductions to our shores and looks at new invader species which could arrive in the future. To date, the majority of invasive species in Ireland are plants, but the future trend may be towards invertebrate and vertebrate species comprising a greater percentage of all new arrivals.  Species such as Killer shrimp, Raccoon dog or the  moth.

Colette O’Flynn, one of the report’s authors notes that ‘the percentage of invasive species in Ireland is comparable to other European countries as is the dramatic recent increase in introductions which is linked to increased movement of people and goods throughout the world’.  Colette O’Flynn urges the “need for analysis to identify where the species are being introduced from and how they are getting here as they may be introduced through intentional trade or unintentional ‘hitchhiking’. Knowing this can help us see how best to prevent these species invading Ireland”.

The report also highlights that while the majority of species are found in the terrestrial environment the rate of increase in introductions is increasing for all environments with the greatest increase for the freshwater environment since 1980.  The freshwater environment is also the only environment where analysis indicates that freshwater non-native species are more likely to be high impact invaders where they are introduced.

The identification sheets can be downloaded from the National Invasive Species Database website.

Ireland’s Invasive and Non-native Species – trends in introductions report.

 

Ends