Killarney National Park Woodland Conservation Project
Description: Killarney National Park is located in Co. Kerry in the south west of Ireland. It is 10,000 hectares in size and comprises of mountains, lakes and woodland. It has an extensive range of trees, plants and wildlife. In the 19th century the rhododendron bush (Rhododendron ponticum) was introduced and has proven to be a highly invasive and destructive specie. The rhododendron is threatening the biodiversity of the park and many native species of trees, shrubs, and mosses.
Type of Work: Volunteers will work on rhododendron control in remote areas of the park. This can involve stem treating mature plants with small tools, the picking of seedlings, and cutting of saplings. The National Park will provide sharp tools such as hatchets, loppers and secateurs and a herbicide as part of their strategy to control the rhododendron plants. Full training on the safe use of these methods and safety equipment will be provided by the National Park.
Accommodation: In a self-serviced hostel in the national park, dormitory style. Please bring your sleeping bag and a pillowcase.There are kitchen facilities in the hostel, basic food ingredients will be provided and the volunteers will share in the domestic duties of cooking and cleaning on a rota basis.
Requirements: Volunteers need to be prepared to work outside and must be able to walk uphill through tough terrain.
Approximate Location: 5 km from Killarney, Co. Kerry in the southwest of Ireland.
Notes: The midge fly and ticks are widespread in the park so volunteers must be prepared to use a strong insect repellent and wear a protective net when working. The park will provide nets, gloves and rubber boots. Volunteers are also required to wear long sleeves and trousers while working. Due to the tough terrain, volunteers must in good physical shape as walking uphill is required. In addition, there will be no Wi-Fi coverage in the park; however, it is available at a local pub located near the hostel. Please note that half of the places on this project are reserved for volunteers from Ireland.