The Burren

Biodiversity The Burren is renowned for its remarkable assemblage of plants and animals. The major habitats within the Burren include: Limestone Pavement, Calcareous Grassland, Hazel scrub, Ash/Hazel Woodland, Turloughs, Lakes, Petrifying Springs, Cliffs and Fen. Local habitats supports many rare Irish species, some of which are only found in this area.Others occur in similar karst areas in western Ireland. Three quarters of Ireland's species of flowers are found in the Burren. The grikes (crevices) provide moist shelter, supporting a wide range of plants including dwarf shrubs. Where the surface of the pavement is shattered into gravel, many of the hardier Arctic or Alpine plants can be found, when the limestone pavement is covered by a thin layer of soil, patches of grass are seen, interspersed with herbaceous plants.

Among the flowers recorded from the Burren is the Spring Gentian, an alpine plant with bright blue flowers that are used as a symbol for the area by the tourist board. The Irish orchid and Bloody cranesbill also occur there. Notable insects present in the Burren include the butterfly the Pearl-bordered Fritillary, Brown Hairstreak, Marsh Fritillary, Wood White; the moths, the Burren Green, Irish Annulet and Transparent Burnet; the hoverfly Doros profuges and the water-beetle Ochthebius nilssoni. This last species is known from just 5 sites in the world, its type locality in northern Sweden and four marl lakes in the Burren.

The Burren is one of the main breeding areas in Ireland of the European Pine Martin. Activities Free guided walks are offered along the trails throughout the Burren National Park covering such topics as Burren flora and fauna, geology and management practices. These will be organised on a regular basis between April and August 2015. Guided walks can also be arranged for interested groups of up to 30 people between May and August 2015. It may also be possible to accommodate groups interested in free guided walks in September. Please the burren national Park for more information. Culture & Music The Burren has a long history of traditional Irish music. It is particularly known for the "West Clare Style" of concertina playing and the music festival in Doolin and Corofin.