Gaelscoil: saving iconic birds

The iconic swift. INBM05-15
The iconic swift. INBM05-15

The students of Gaelscoil an Chaistil have won a grant from the NIEL Challenge Fund to help save one of the most iconic birds within The Glens of Antrim.

Teacher Grace Mhic Mhaoláin explained: “We have increasingly been moving toward working with indigenous environmental issues and working with experts, so that the children get a real sense of what impact their personal actions can have on our local environment.

“This current project came from a partnership with the local Biodiversity Officer Rachel Bain who is very interested in saving swifts in the local area. The school then approached the Heart of The Glens Landscape Partnership to support us with the application process.

“The Swift with its iconic Gaelic name of Gabhlán Gaoithe, which translates as ‘Wind Fork’, is a bird that has lived alongside us in our towns and villages for hundreds of years. However the students will learn more about the state of the Swift populations and find out what they can do to ensure their survival in the Ballycastle area going into the future.

“This project will see the children engage with a range of public organisations using advocacy to ensure that people become more aware of this important species while making sure local populations are protected into the future.”