Gallery/ Wildlife on the Bog
What's So Special about the bog?
The Abbeyleix Bog area is a significant and large wildlife refuge and contains several semi-natural and modified habitats. The old Portlaoise-Kilkenny railway line enters Abbeyleix bog near the northern tip and divides it into two main sections. The railway has now been removed but the old embankment is an important amenity route (and important wildlife corridor for animals like butterflies) through the site. The majority of the raised bog (PB1) has been classified as ‘Degraded raised bog’ (Ecologic 2009). Significant features of particular ecological interest include a small area of ‘active raised bog’. (Both habitats are listed on Annex I of the EU Habitats Directive and active raised bog is a priority habitat). The presence of an intact lagg along the eastern side of the bog (outside the Ecological Network) is a very significant feature of this site, as these transitional zones around raised bogs have generally been destroyed by peat-cutting and habitat loss. This lagg is partially wooded and can be classified as ‘fen carr’.
Link to Irish Butterflies Site which is has a very good guide for all Irish Butterflies
Raised bogs are peatlands fed exclusively by rainfall rather than ground water or streams. Growth of Sphagnum moss creates a dome shape which does not allow water to collect or flow inward. Fully intact bogs are typically surrounded by a lagg fen or wetland area which is fed by surface water.