Some of Ireland’s most iconic bird species are in dramatic decline with one-in-eight now deemed to face an extinction threat.
The warning came as a major ornithological conference in University College Cork (UCC) heard that the species decline has occurred despite the greatest conservation effort in Irish history.
The threat is now so severe that, within the next 10 years, some of Ireland’s moved loved bird species may vanish from the island altogether.
Some species have seen their numbers plummet by almost 80pc in 25 years.
Species now under greatest threat include the Curlew, the Corncrake, Barn Owl and the Yellowhammer.
Ireland has also witnessed a dramatic decline in the number of seabirds and migratory water fowl.
There is mounting evidence that milder winters on the Continent as a consequence of global warming may be directly responsible for the decline.
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