ireland rewinding: what would a truly wild ireland look like?
On a remote patch of land in the south-west of Ireland lies a precious fragment of a lost world – owned and managed by one man. Eleven years ago, Eoghan Daltun sold his house in Dublin and moved to his new home, an old farm on County Cork's rugged coast. The farm, on the Beara Peninsula, included a strip of native woodland, something that is now incredibly rare in Ireland, as well as Europe. Daltun saw that 32-acre (13-hectare) patch of ancient trees as his very own temperate rainforest – a type of mossy forest once far more common in Britain and Ireland, made possible in part thanks to moist island air.
By pulling out heaps of non-native plants, including rhododendron, and erecting a fence to keep sheep and deer from grazing the area, Daltun gave his forest a chance to flourish and expand. Life has, in fact, exploded.