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River Monster Parade

28 July 2024
A costume of a monster worn by several people in a park in summer

River Monster Parade

SUNDAY 28 July 12 – 1 pm

Gleann a Phúca is delighted to invite the Dripsey River Monster to the Glen Park

We are seeking participants young and old families and friends to come and join us and even don a costume if you would like to become a monster! Or just come and watch the fun.

A costume of a monster worn by several people in a park in summer
Come and be the Caddis fly larva


The return of the Serpent (Péist)

Fado fado the lake at Gougane Barra is said to have been home to a serpent, a hungry dragon who ate peoples’ cows, or even the people themselves–if it could get them. This understandably caused upset and distress, so those living near the lake went to St Finbar and asked him if he could do anything about the serpent. St Finbar sought out the monster and cursed it and ordered it to be gone. At that time there was no outlet from the lake, but as the serpent wriggled and writhed and tried to escape, it broke out from the lake, the water following him. His weight was so great his body carved a channel with shallows and deeps. When he needed to rest the serpent curled up in a hole and the people following him shouted ‘Tá sé i n-a luighe, Tá sé i n-a luighe’. The serpent wriggled all the way to the sea, and the channel he carved got its name from the call of the people. And that is how the River Lee got its name.

Now we live in different times: the river monsters are smaller and no longer eat people or cows. They are the freshwater invertebrates that are vital members of the river ecosystem, though they still look like little monsters. Long ago, they needed to be banished. Now they need to be encouraged back to our rivers, because once they come the bigger things that depend on them – the fish, the dippers, the kingfishers, the otters, the fishermen – will follow.

In the spirit of encouraging the return of the river monsters, the Friends of the Dripsey Rivers, a community group concerned with one of the branches of the river Lee, have a plan. The group has made wearable large-scale models of some of the important freshwater invertebrates, the largest being a six-metre-long green dragon (or technically a green caddis larva!) In connection with Heritage Week, these creatures will travel all the way from Cork City back to the lake from which the serpent was originally banished, at Gougane Barra, meeting up with community groups along the way.

Citizen Science Kick Sampling

We will be searching for the real heros in the Glen River’s water

A woman and a boy standing in the river with a net

Will we find  the charismatic flattened Mayfly? or the enigmatic Caddis fly larva ?

Come and see how healthy our Glen River Water is and document our results for the record document our findings for Science. Find out how we can care for our rivers.

We will be tesing the new Citizen Science Esker Box borrowed from the library

A photo close up of a person holding a clipboard and checking data findings on it
documenting the Glen water creatures

Why not bring a picnic and make a day of it – stick around for the afternoon and join the Botanical Odyssey – see our other listing for more…

A poster advertising the Events of 28 July in the Glen


Gleann a' Phúca

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