Image for Mossy woodland

Mossy woodland

Duration: 01:59

The classic landscapes of Ireland are headlands and sea cliffs, lakes and streams, mountains, moorlands and peat bogs. One thing you don't associate with Ireland is forest. In ancient times Ireland was totally covered in trees but inevitably our old mate mankind took his toll and the woodland was cleared for farming, timber was felled for barrel making and ship building and particularly for charcoal for the iron industry. The result is that today Ireland has relatively fewer trees than any other country in Europe. But what remains are these rather splendid oak woods - perfect conditions for mosses and lichens plus rather wonderful ferns. An old tree stump looks as though it's covered in a sumptuous mossy table cloth, but you come down close and it's like being in a miniature rainforest, because you realise there's all sorts of different shapes. Some are like miniature Christmas trees, and these others are called filmy ferns. A verdant magical world in miniature.

Available since: Mon 7 Jun 2010


Bill Oddie
Conor Kelleher
Camera Operator
Gavin Thurston
Sound Engineer
Chris Watson
Sean Christian

This clip is from

Bill Oddie Goes Wild Series 3, South West Ireland

5/8 Bill Oddie visits Ireland & the Skellig Isles to see some local wildlife specialities.

First broadcast: 07 Feb 2003

Image for South West Ireland Not currently available on BBC iPlayer

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Added. Check out your playlist Dismiss