Booterstown Marsh

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Booterstown Marsh

Postby Rocker » Tue Aug 09, 2016 3:18 pm

I am fascinated by the Bird Sanctuary at Booterstown and took this piece from the An Taisce site

The only remaining saltmarsh on the south shore of Dublin Bay - it provides an environmental awareness amenity within an urban setting. A brackish water marsh, approx. 4.3 ha, with both salt and fresh water intakes. It has a seasonal and annual fluctuation in its pattern of vegetation and this instability is characteristic of marshes of this type.

The only Bird Sanctuary in South Dublin Bay - Dublin Bay is an internationally important feeding and roosting area for ducks, geese and waders, and probably holds the highest concentration of wintering waterfowl of an Irish estuary. As part of the Dublin Bay area, Booterstown Marsh is an essential refuelling and resting spot for migrating birds and provides three main habitats ranging from freshwater to saltwater( Moorhen, Reed Bunting, Sedge Warbler, Teal, Snipe, Lapwing, Oystercatcher, Redshank, Dunlin, and Brent Geese).

Puccinellia fasiculata occurs in the marsh - it is one of only 68 plant species protected, along with its habitat, under the Wildlife Act (Flora Protection Order of 1987).

HISTORY / DESCRIPTION

Up to the early 19th century, the area currently occupied by Booterstown Marsh was part of Merrion Strand and extended as a fringe marsh from Dublin City to Blackrock. Overtime much of this was lost to reclamation and development. In 1834 the new Dublin to Kingston railway was built on a raised stone-faced embankment across this part of the bay, cutting off an area of the strand between Merrion Gates and Blackrock from the sea. On the first six-inch Ordnance Survey map of this area in the 1830's, the resulting tidal lagoon (or intake) measured over 28.3 ha and was already subdivided into three parts. Much of the original lagoon was infilled in the 19th century, leaving only Booterstown Marsh at or near the high tide level. For most of the period from the mid-19th and mid-20th century the marsh area was grazed or cultivated and cultivation ridges, which are still a prominent feature of the eastern side of the marsh. During both World Wars much of the marsh was drained and cultivated, restricting but not eliminating the influence of the inflowing streams and saline ditch. When the allotments fell into disuse, marsh vegetation gradually reclaimed the arable land. In the 1950's and 1960's, land was further infilled at both ends of the marsh, a car park was constructed at the south-western corner, while the Trimleston stream was culverted along the northern edge of the marsh, to discharge to the sea.

HOW ACQUIRED

Requested by An Taisce in 1950 to prevent development on wasteland.
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Re: Booterstown Marsh

Postby Rocker » Tue Aug 09, 2016 3:39 pm

This is from Wikipedia,

There are three main habitats ranging from near-freshwater in the north-western corner to near-saltwater by the DART station, with a graduation between.

At present the condition of the mud and water have improved, and birds have returned in large numbers. The scirpus growth has significantly reduced, and the many other species of plant occurring in the marsh have recovered. One of these, Puccinellia fasiculata, commonly "Borrer's saltmarsh grass," is protected, along with its habitat.[1] Other flora include salt-tolerant species such as sea milkwort, false fox sedge, and sea spurrey.

The marsh area attracts moorhen,[8] common teal, reed bunting, coot,[8] mallard duck, sedge warbler, common snipe, little egret,[8] northern lapwing, Eurasian oystercatcher,[8] bar-tailed godwit, common redshank,[8] dunlin, knot,[8] and brent goose. Additional species breeding in the marsh or visiting from nearby breeding locations include common blackbird, dunnock and wren. Rarer visitors but sometimes sighted are grey heron,[8] spotted redshank, ruff and little stint, and very rare but recorded have been sparrowhawk, one of the avocet breeds and the short-billed dowitcher (2004-2005). Along the Nutley Stream kingfisher[8] appear, and greenshank[8] and water rail are seen in the south eastern corner.[6] From the shore, common gull, herring gull and black-headed gull visit.[8]
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Re: Booterstown Marsh

Postby Rocker » Tue Aug 09, 2016 3:44 pm

What got me reading up on the Marsh today is the fact that this morning from the DART I noticed very fast moving water along the railway boundary...must say I hadn't noticed this before. Apparently it is the Nutley Stream.

There were two swans who appeared to be stuck in the dense vegetation in the stagnant water but then they dipped their graceful necks and had their breakfast!

What a gorgeous site beside a busy main road.
I am not afraid of tomorrow, for I have seen yesterday and I love today.
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