A small native Irish mammal has entered the digital age by having its own website.
www.pinemarten.ie is a one-stop shop for information on pine martens in Ireland, and is the result of a partnership between Vincent Wildlife Trust (VWT) and the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) of the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.
Although now present in every county, the pine marten is still one of Ireland’s rarest mammals and is legally protected. The website has been created with the help of a grant from the NPWS.
Dr Kate McAney of the Vincent Wildlife Trust said: “Both VWT and NPWS have been dealing with an increasing number of calls from the general public seeking information and advice about the pine marten, so we decided the best way to make this available was via a dedicated website.”
In addition to providing facts on identification, distribution, habitat and ecology, the website offers practical advice on, for example, how to deal with a pine marten in an attic, and presents videos that show how to keep martens out of pheasant pens, hen houses and wheelie bins.
“Interactions between the public and pine martens are inevitable” said Dr McAney, “due to the lack of suitable woodland it prefers, but we believe these interactions can be managed to the satisfaction of both human and marten, helped by access to accurate information.”
Welcoming the launch of the website, Dr Ferdia Marnell of NPWS said “the absence of reliable information on the pine marten in Ireland was identified as a major obstacle to the conservation of the species and we are delighted to see this information hub fill that gap.”
The website also provides a dedicated node for journalists looking for up-to-date and accurate information and resources on Ireland’s pine martens.
This welcome resource will add to the crucial work needed to increase wildlife biodiversity on both a national and global scale. This can only be good news.