Hey everyone, it’s Dara again! Lorcan and Bláthnaid will be blogging again soon, I promise 😉
Today has been really brilliant! I had been approached a while ago by BBC Northern Ireland about doing some filming with the Homeground team, which is a bit like N.Ireland’s answer to Countryfile! I was surprised and delighted to be given the opportunity to accompany the presenter, Jo Scott on a Bioblitz and give her a helping hand with identification. I have to say, even though I ‘revised’ with my ID books I was still really nervous. I needn’t have been though, because the team were absolutely brilliant, friendly and very relaxed. 

I really enjoyed chatting with Jo, getting down deep into the grass in search of wildflowers and insects. We just concentrated on one tiny area at Gortmaconnell Rock (one of my absolute favourite places) and the biodiversity was amazing! I talked to Jo about the Heath Orchid, Grasses and Beetles. It was so much fun being directed by Michael. Conal and the filming crew were so lovely. What a great experience! It’ll be aired at some point in September ☺️


We later had our lunch and carried on with our Bioblitz at the Geopark until late afternoon and then submitted our records at the main Geopark visitor centre to Pauline at CEDaR (Centre for Environmental Data and Recording). It was so absolutely brilliant to feel like we were making a difference to scientific data and knowledge of species here in Fermanagh. I forgot to photograph the copy of our filled out sheet! 

We found the following species at Gortmaconnell alone in the short time we were there! 25 wildflower and broad leaved plant species. 3 tree species. 8 Bryophyte species. 13 insect species. 8 bird species, Irish Hare and Feral goats too!! We probably missed a lot because of the rain and the fact that I did feel really overwhelmed and a wee bit drained by the earlier filming but the day was really excellent. 


Huge thanks to Ruth Sanderson who got in touch with my mum and travelled a long way to come and chat with me. I wasn’t in my natural environment (outside), so I hope I did a better job chatting with Jo! 😉

A lot of people have been asking about the filming I did a couple of weeks ago and I’m delighted and astounded to let you all know that the Springwatch Unsprung team made a film with me and my family – it’ll be shown next Friday (16th June) at 6.30pm! How exciting!! I’m writing a whole big blog about my experience as it might not be over yet 😉
Thanks a lot for reading 
Dara