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Call of the Wild – wet weather included!

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The inaugural ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering in Killarney National Park last weekend, was a resounding success as up to one hundred people came to witness nature at its best.

NEVER MIND THE WEATHER: Children Tom Fee (left) and Liam Glover enjoying the Children's Autumn Scavenger Hunt at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

Hugh O'Donoghue from Glencar at the 'Call of the Wild' autumn gathering discussion session of the typical working life of NPWS Conservation Rangers. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

WEATHERING THE STORM: Children with Siobhan McAllister Knockreer Education Centre taking shelter in the woods in the Children's Autumn Scavanger Hunt at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

DEER WATCHING: Niamh Duignan and her son Conor enjoying the Dawn Watch at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

DEER WATCHING: Niamh Duignan and her son Conor enjoying the Dawn Watch at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

GET THOSE BROLLIES READY: Rain and wind didn't deter enjoyment of the Dawn Watch at Knockreer Killarney National Park ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. From left: Loreto O'Leary Martin Ashe Creag Power Tara Monaghan and Lynn Cooney. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

GET THOSE BROLLIES READY: Rain and wind didn't deter enjoyment of the Dawn Watch at Knockreer Killarney National Park ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. From left: Loreto O'Leary Martin Ashe Creag Power Tara Monaghan and Lynn Cooney. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

GET THOSE BROLLIES READY: Rain and wind didn't deter enjoyment of the Dawn Watch at Knockreer Killarney National Park ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. From left: Loreto O'Leary Martin Ashe Creag Power Tara Monaghan and Lynn Cooney. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

GET THOSE BROLLIES READY: Rain and wind didn't deter enjoyment of the Dawn Watch at Knockreer Killarney National Park ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. From left: Loreto O'Leary Martin Ashe Creag Power Tara Monaghan and Lynn Cooney. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

CALM BEFORE THE STORM: The dawn appears followed by thunder and lightning at the Dawn Watch at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

LEADING THE WAY: Conservation Ranger Padruig O'Sullivan National Park and WIldlife Services leading the Dawn Watch at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

DARKNESS: Sean Forde Conservation Ranger with National Park and WIldlife Services leading the Night Watch at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

LEADING THE WAY: Conservation Ranger Padruig O'Sullivan National Park and WIldlife Services leading the Dawn Watch at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

LISTENING: Karen Sheehan and Corrie O'Flahery at the 'Call of the Wild' autumn gathering discussion session of the typical working life of NPWS Conservation Rangers. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

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SPLASHING ABOUT: Alice Pyne (left) Evie Doolan Ollie Pyne and Jessie Doolan enjoying the Children's Autumn Scavenger Hunt at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

RAIN RAIN GO AWAY: Rain no problem to children taking shelter in the woods enjoying the Children's Autumn Scavanger Hunt at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

IN MEMORY: Divisional Manager Killarney National Park Eamonn Meskell delivered the Inaugural 'Paudie O’Leary Lecture' at Killarney House Auditorium showing a set of images that Paudie had presented to him. Paudie was the Head Conservation Ranger at Killarney National Park and sadly passed away unexpectedly in August 2012. His gentle presence has left a huge void among his peers and people of Killarney. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

HONOURING PAUDIE: At the Inaugural Paudie O’Leary Lecture were members of the late Paudie O'Leary’s family. To honour Paudie’s memory Divisional Manager Killarney National Park Eamonn Meskell (standing second left) delivered the Inaugural Paudie O’Leary Lecture at Killarney House Auditorium showing a set of images that Paudie had presented to him. Front row from left: Sinead O'Leary Bríd O'Leary and Geraldine O'Leary. Back row from left: Danny O'Keeffe (District Conservation Officer NPWS) Eamonn Meskell Muireann O'Leary Mary Horan Noreen O'Sullivan and Eileen Moran. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

Sitting from left: Geraldine O'Leary wife of the late Paudie and former colleagues Dan Kelleher and Paddy O'Sullivan. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

INTRIGUED: Tom Fee is intrigued as he listens for clues during the Children's Autumn Scavenger Hunt at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

Divisional Manager Killarney National Park Eamonn Meskell (sitting centre) delivered the Inaugural Paudie O’Leary Lecture at Killarney House Auditorium showing a set of images that Paudie had presented to him. Sitting from left: Peter O'Toole Paschal Dower John O'Connor. Standing: Tim Burkett and Brendan O'Shea. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

DISCUSSION: As part of 'Call of the Wild' autumn gathering there was a discussion session of the typical working life of NPWS Conservation Rangers chaired by Chief Executive Kerry County Council Moira Murrell (first left) at Muckross School House. Also pictured from left: NPWS Conservation Rangers Mary Sheehan Padrúig (Brac) O'Sullivan and Sean Forde. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

TAKING A BREAK: Children taking a break at the Autumn Scavenger Hunt at Knockreer Killarney National Park as part of the National Park and Wildlife Services (NPWS) ‘Call of the Wild’ autumn gathering weekend. Photo: Valerie O'Sullivan

The rain and thunder didn’t deter the enjoyment of the many activities led by a team of dedicated and passionate Conservation Rangers led by Danny O’Keeffe, District Conservation Officer, NPWS.

Autumn in Killarney National Park, in particular the month of October, is considered the most amazing time to observe the Irish Red deer activity during the annual rutting season. The renowned native Irish Red deer are the largest and only native species with a continuous presence in Ireland since the end of the last Ice Age (c.10,000 BC).

The audible bellows and tribal behaviour is fascinating. More than one hundred people, some travelling long distances for Saturday and Sunday morning's Dawn Watch, led by Conservation Ranger NPWS, Padruig O’Sullivan, were treated to a fascinating performance by the Irish Red deer stags as they gathered their hinds in Knockreer Estate.

REMEMBERING PAUDIE

The weekend also featured the Inaugural Paudie O’Leary Lecture. Paudie was the Head Conservation Ranger at Killarney National Park, and sadly passed away unexpectedly in August 2012. His gentle presence has left a huge void among his work colleagues, family and people of Killarney. His knowledge and love of the National Park was incredible. To honour Paudie’s memory, Divisional Manager Killarney National Park, Eamonn Meskell, delivered the Inaugural Paudie O’Leary Lecture at Killarney House Auditorium. In a very personal delivery, Eamonn showed a set of images taken by Paudie of his life and work in Killarney National Park. Members of Paudie’s family attended the lovely event including his wife, Geraldine O’Leary, daughters, Sinead O'Leary, Bríd O'Leary, Muireann O'Leary, family members, Mary Horan, Noreen O'Sullivan, and Eileen Moran. His former work colleagues, Peter O'Toole, Paschal Dower, John O'Connor, Tim Burkett and Brendan O'Shea, Dan Kelleher, Paddy O’Sullivan and Áine Ní Shúilleabháin.

Children attending the Scavenger Hunt at Knockreer Education Centre, though drenched, had a fantastic time collecting and identifying fallen leaves and nuts.

The Autumn Night Watch led by Conservation Ranger NPWS Sean Forde, drew a dedicated group of people, they were shown native bats, Sika hinds and stags, and listened to bellowing of the Irish Red stag.

Sunday's discussion group at Muckross School House, was facilitated by Chief Executive Kerry County Council, Moira Murrell, and Conservation Rangers NPWS, Mary Sheehan, Padruig O’Sullivan and Sean Forde, disused their work within the 10,000 hectares encompassing Killarney National Park, covering a diverse range of subjects, the importance of ecology, preserving the ancient oak and yew woodlands - the most extensive covering of native forest of international importance, the famous Lakes of Killarney, the future of the Park and changes of their roles over the past 40 years.

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Retiring Garda Sergeant began career in Killarney

Antoinette Cunningham who retired last week from An Garda Síochána and the Association of Garda Sergeant’s and Inspector’s as their General Secretary started her career 33 years ago in Killarney. […]

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Antoinette Cunningham who retired last week from An Garda Síochána and the Association of Garda Sergeant’s and Inspector’s as their General Secretary started her career 33 years ago in Killarney.

Sergeant In charge at Killarney Garda Station Dermot O’Connell paid tribute to her achievements and her unrelenting commitment to improving the policing environment.

As a former Chairman, Secretary and delegate of the Kerry Branch, Sergeant Dermot O’Connell worked closely with Antoinette in AGSI for many years.

“Her support for members of the Association was second to none. Antoinette always pursued what was right and just. Her ability, knowledge and professionalism was acknowledged both internally and externally by other representative bodies and also professional bodies,” he said.

“When Antoinette arrived here at her first station, the late Jack McGrath was the Sergeant In Charge.”
“As many know Sergeant Jack McGrath frequently walked the beat. During this time Jack shared much of his experience with Antoinette who proved her ability as a competent Garda to Sergeant Jack McGrath. “
“Jack was very impressed by her ability even at that early stage, he always spoke highly of Antoinette and followed her career path with great interest.”

Antoinette subsequently transferred to Limerick (Roxboro Road and Mayorstone Garda Stations). As a Sergeant she moved to the Garda College and completed a Master’s Degree in Adult Learning and a BA in Training and Education.
In 2021 Antoinette was honoured by University Galway with an Alumni Award for her significant contribution in the field of policing.

She became the first female member to serve with the Association of Sergeants and Inspectors at Branch level, National Executive level, President, Deputy General Secretary and finally General Secretary.

“On behalf of the Kerry Branch of AGSI I wish Antoinette the very best in whatever the future holds for her and her family,” added Sergeant O’Connell.

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‘The Bumblebee1000’ Supercar event arriving in Killarney on Saturday

The ‘Bumblebee1000’ supercar run will arrive in Killarney around 5pm on Saturday. Around 40 supercars will leave Barberstown Castle in County Kildare on Saturday morning.After stops at Portlaoise Plaza (11am) […]

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The ‘Bumblebee1000’ supercar run will arrive in Killarney around 5pm on Saturday.

Around 40 supercars will leave Barberstown Castle in County Kildare on Saturday morning.
After stops at Portlaoise Plaza (11am) and Cashel Palace Hotel (1pm) the convoy will arrive the Europe Hotel and Resort at 5pm.
“’The Bumblebee1000’ is not just about horsepower and adrenaline rushes; it’s about making a difference. As participants roar through the countryside, they’ll also be driving towards a noble cause. This event is dedicated to raising awareness and funds for The Little Blues Heroes charity, supporting the children of the Little Blue Heroes, and making a positive impact on their lives,” said an event spokesperson.
“The Bumblebee1000” is not just a journey; it’s an experience that blends luxury, adventure, and philanthropy in a seamless fusion. Whether behind the wheel of a sleek supercar or a supporter cheering from the sidelines, everyone is invited to be part of this remarkable event.
The cars will depart the Europe Hotel and Resort at 10am on Sunday and will stop off at a charity cars and coffee event in Tarbert at 11am before finishing in Adare at around 2pm.

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