Hooker Racing

There are four classes of traditional sailing boats in Connemara: Bád Mór (Hookers) , Leathbhád, Gleoiteog and Púcán. The Gleoiteog is divided into two sub-classes: Gleoiteoga Móra and Gleoteoga Beaga.

Hooker races in Connemara are usually held during the day at many of the summer regattas held along the coast. (details of the regattas can be found at http://www.huiceiri.ie/  )

The boats that race have been restored by the Galway Hooker Association ( http://www.huiceiri.ie/) which plays a critical role in maintaining the boat building, navigation and maintenance skills necessary to preserve these unique and beautiful vessels.

The hooker "Bád Mór" has for over 200 years been the maritime workhorse of Connemara carrying turf to the Aran islands, Mayo or Clare and returning with a load of fish or limestone to feed Conenmaras lime kilns. Connemara had a maritime tradition and the sea was the major means of moving from one point to the other along the coast for people living on islands, peninsulas or the mainland coast. They sailed to Galway to shop in these boats built especially to navigate the bays and narrow inlets of Connemara, rough open seas and shallow waters.

Curragh Racing

Curragh racing is a feature of the many regattas that are held on the Connemara coast during the summer.

Both men and womens teams take part in fast skillful rowing races. Teams can consist of 1 to 4 individuals depending on the boat size. Some teams use use specially built curraghs whch ride high in the water and as they have no rudder must be steered by the oars. The currach is steered using the oars. Winning in a racing currachs is all about skill, stamina, strength especially in windy conditions.  Races generally involve a course of multiple kilometres with teams racing to a mid point and then returning to the start line. 

The growing interest in curragh racing plays a ital part in preserving the boat building skills all along the west coast of Ireland.

Poc Fada

Poc Fada is Irish for   long puck. An All-Ireland Poc Fada Championship is held annually to test the distance hitting skills of  the top hurlers. 

The concept of the competition originates in the Irish legend of  Tain Bo Cuailgne   when Cuchulainn, who as the boy Setanta set out from his home to the King s court at Emain Macha hitting his sliotar before him and running ahead to catch it.  The current course is 5 km.

The tournament was founded in 1960 by Fr. Pol Mac Sheain and the Naomh Moninne club based in Fatima, Dundalk, Louth, with the first All Ireland event taking place in 1961. The competition went off the calendar after 1969 before returning in 1981. 

The Senior men complete the full circuit (4 stages). the Camogie contestants poc to An Gabhlan and back again (2 stages) 2.5 km. The boys u16 poc to An Gabhlan and back again (2 stages) 2.5 km. 

Competitors must puck a sliotar with a hurley (they may lift and strike or hit the ball from the hand). 

They play to the top of Carn an Mhadaidh (Co Louth) and after a short break continue back down to finish in Aghameen. The whole course measures over 5 Km. An Corn Cuailgne (  The Cooley Cup  ) is awarded (like golf) to the player who takes the lowest number of pucks to complete the course. 
Ties are broken by the distance by which the player s last puck crosses the finish line. 
There is also the comortas beirte (pairs competition) in which the competitors are randomly assigned partners, the pair with the lowest combined score winning An Corn Setanta (The Setanta Cup) and the Corn na Craoibhe Rua (  The Trophy of the Red Mountain  ).    

Gaelic Handball

Handball is a traditional sport played in Ireland.  It is one of the four Gaelic games organised by the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA).

In Ireland, the earliest written record of a handball game is found in the town statutes of Galway in 1527, which forbade the playing of ball games  against the walls of the town.   The first drawing of an Irish form of handball does not appear till 1785. On the west coast of Ireland, Galway had many trading links with Spain, especially the Basque regions, where the similar game of pelota is played.

Handball was included in the G.A.A. Charter of 1884. In 1924  the Irish Handball Council  was established to promote, develop and organise the sport. In 1974 Comhairle Liathroid Laimhe na mBan was founded to run womens competitions. In 1998 these were  merged to a single Irish Handball Council. In 2009 it became the  GAA Irish Handball Council. In the same year Irish Handball was rebranded as GAA Handball.

Handball is played in a court, or   alley. Originally, an alley measuring 60 feet by 30 feet was used with a front wall of 30 feet, off which the ball must be struck. In 1969 a smaller alley was also introduced, measuring 40 feet by 20 feet with a front wall 20 ft high.  This smaller size is now the standard in the international version of the game.

Players hit a ball with a hand or fist against a wall in such a way as to make a shot the opposition cannot return. It can be played with two players (singles) or four players (doubles).

The objective of handball is to score a set total of points before your opponent does. Points are only scored by the person serving the ball. The serving player has two opportunities to hit the ball, from the   service area   (between the two parallel lines), off the   front wall   and across the   short line   (which is located exactly halfway down the court from the front wall). If they fail their opponent then becomes the server.  

Gaelic Football

Gaelic football is a traditional Irish ball game. 

Gaelic football is one of the few remaining strictly amateur sports in the world, with players, coaches, and managers prohibited from receiving any form of payment.   

The All Ireland football final (yet to be won by Mayo)  is usually attended by over 80,000 people each September.  It is one of four sports (Football, Hurling, Camogie and Handball) controlled by the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) which is the largest sporting organisation in Ireland.  Under the GAA, football is a male-only sport. 

A  related sport of ladies Gaelic football is governed by the Ladies  Gaelic Football Association.

The first reference to football in Ireland was in 1308 and the later Statute of Galway in 1527 allowed football and archery but banned Hurling.  In 1670 the first references to catching and kicking in football was recorded but in 1695 the game was banned under the Sunday Observance Act .  In 1712 the first inter county match was recorded as being between Meath and Louth.  

In 1887 the first codified set of rules were established for Gaelic football.  The GAA sought to promote traditional Irish sports, such as hurling and to reject foreign (particularly English) games such as soccer and rugby. The restrictions on playing other sports by GAA members have now been eased  or eliminated.  

Two teams of 15 players play for 60 minutes using a round leather ball on a rectangular pitch which is 130 to145 metres long and 80 to 90 m wide. At each long end there are two goal posts that are 6 to 7 meters apart  and a cross bar at a height of 2.5 meters. When a team gets the ball over the bar (but between the goal posts) they score a point which equals 1 point. If the ball passes under the bar (but between the goal posts) the team gets a goal that counts as 3 points. 


Hurling is an Irish team sport  that comes from traditional Irish ball games. There is a similar game for women called camogie (camogaiocht).  It is considered to be the worlds fastest field sport. 

There are verbal historical reference dating back to 1200 B.C when it was played  at Tara co Meath. The earliest written references to hurling are found in Brehon law dating from the fifth century Recorded references to hurling appear in many places such as the fourteenth century Statutes of Kilkenny and a fifteenth-century grave slab survives in Inishowen, County Donegal. Hurling  was banned in Galway in 1527. Hurling is also recorded as being played  by teams representing neighbouring villages. Villages would play games. Such games could involve hundreds of players and could last several hours or  days.

Today two teams of 15 players play for 75 minutes using a ball (sliotar) made of a cork core covered by two pieces of leather stitched together  on a rectangular pitch which is 130 to 145 metres long and 80 to 90 m wide. At each long end there are two goal posts that are 6 to 7 meters apart  and a cross bar at a height of 2.5 meters. When a team gets the ball over the bar (but between the goal posts) they score a point which equals 1 point. If the ball passes under the bar (but between the goal posts) the team gets a goal that counts as 3 points. 

Unlike golf the highest scoring team usually wins. 


Camogie (Ka-mo-gee) is an Irish stick-and-ball team sport played by women; it is almost identical to the game of hurling played by men. 

Camogie is played by 100,000 women in Ireland and worldwide, largely among Irish communities. 

It is organised by the Dublin-based Camogie Association or An Cumann Camógaíochta.Matches are contested by two teams of 15 a side, using a field 130m to 145m long and 80m to 90m wide. H-shape goals are used, a goal (scored when the ball goes between the posts and under the bar) is equal to three points and a point (scored when the ball goes over the bar) is equal to one point. 

The annual All Ireland Camogie Championship has a record attendance of 33,154, while average attendances in recent years are in the region of 15,000 to 18,000. The final is televised live, with a TV audience of over 300,000 being claimed.

The rules are almost identical to hurling, with a few exceptions. Goalkeepers wear the same colours as outfield players. This is because no special rules apply to the goalkeeper and so there is no need for officials to differentiate between goalkeeper and outfielders. A camogie player can hand-pass a score (forbidden in hurling since 1980). 

Camogie games last 60 minutes, two 30-minute halves (senior inter-county hurling games last 70, which is two 35-minute halves). Ties are resolved by multiple 2×10-minute sudden death extra time periods; in these, the first team to score wins. Dropping the camogie stick to handpass the ball is permitted. A smaller sliotar (ball) is used in camogie – commonly known as a size 4 sliotar – whereas hurlers play with a size 5 sliotar. If a defending player hits the sliotar wide, a 45-metre puck is awarded to the opposition (in hurling, it is a 65-metre puck). After a score, the goalkeeper pucks out from the 13-metre line. (in hurling, he must puck from the end line). The metal band on the camogie stick must be covered with tape. (not necessary in hurling) Side-to-side charges are forbidden. (permitted in hurling). Two points are awarded for a score direct from a sideline cut (since March 2012). Camogie players must wear skirts or skorts rather than shorts. 

Connemara Marriage and Divorce

Marriage and Divorce are both legal in Connemara. Modern rules relating to both are somewhat different than in previous centuries.

Ancient Irish law tracts give precedence  to a mans one official wife, the first in the household   (cetmuinter).

The first wife usually contributed movable property of her own to the joint housekeeping. She was, in the case of a divorce, entitled to receive it back along with any accumulated profits.

Divorce could be initiated by either the husband or the wife.

There were a number of grounds for divorce.
A wife, could cite her husbands impotence or sterility, his beating her severely enough to leave a scar, homosexuality causing him to neglect her marriage bed, failure to provide for her support, discussing her sexual performance in public, spreading rumours about her, his having tricked her into marriage by using magic, or his having abandoned her for another woman.

If the husband abandoned his First Wife for another woman the first wife had the right to remain in the marriage if she wished, and was entitled to continued maintenance from her husband.

Connemara Irish Language

 It is estimated that 1.66 million (39%) people in the Republic of Ireland can speak some Irish and in Northern Ireland 10.4% claim to have some knowledge of Irish.

The Irish language along with English is one of two official languages in Ireland. It is the main language of the Gaeltacht (Irish speaking) regions. Irish is also one of the 24 official languages of the European Union.

Irish is one of the last 6 surviving Celtic Languages in Europe. Celtic languages (Irish, Scottish Gaelic, Manx Gaelic (Manx), Welsh, Breton and Cornish).  Their origins are believed to be from Common Celtic, which is an Indo-European in origin.

Irish the oldest written native language north of the Alps. Ogham, from the 5th and 6th centuries, is the oldest written form of Irish that exists. This is generally found inscribed on stones. By the 7th century the Roman alphabet had replaced Ogham as the main alphabet use in writing Irish.

It is believed that Irish came to Ireland over 2,500 years ago and by the beginning of the Christian period Irish had replaced all other languages spoken in Ireland. The Irish language was heavily influenced by the already existing prehistoric languages, and contained a number of borrowings, particularly those relating to personal and tribal names.

The development of the Irish language, from its earliest recorded days to the present, is divided by scholars into four distinct periods:

1. Old Irish:  600-900 CE
2. Middle Irish: 900-1200
3. Early Modern Irish or Classical Irish: 1200-1650
4. Modern Irish: 1650-present day

The forms of the language known as Old Irish and Middle Irish are accessible only to those with a specialised scholarly training. Although it has a standardised spelling and grammar, Modern Irish as spoken today has three main dialects: Munster Irish, Western or Connemara Irish, and Ulster or Donegal Irish.

Irish adopted words from other cultures such as Scandinavian in the Middle Irish period (900-1200 AD) and with the arrival of the Anglo Normans in the 12th century introduced multilingualism into Ireland. This also marked the beginning of the decline in the use of Irish.

Although the majority of the people spoke Irish, English, became necessary for administrative and legal purposes. Irish, was never again the main administrative language in Ireland but remained it the main daily language of rural inhabitants and working class urban dwellers.

The language was heavily discriminated against under the 16th century Penal Laws. The last of these laws were finally rescinded by the Government of Ireland Act 1920. These laws severely undermined Irish as did the increasing adoption of an anglicised lifestyle and the population loss of the Great Famine of 1845 – 1847 when rural populations of the west collapsed.

Of the five million people estimated to be living in Ireland at the end of the eighteenth century, two million were monoglot Irish speakers, one and a half million were bilingual in Irish and English with a further one and a half million English speakers. Predominant among the monolingual Irish speakers were the rural poor, in particular those concentrated in peripheral areas of the South, West and North West of the country. This class were especially vulnerable to changing circumstances: they were repeatedly reduced during the nineteenth century by famine, epidemic and emigration, and were almost totally wiped out by the Great Famine of 1846-9.

The nineteenth century was, by any standards, a calamitous one for the language. According to the 1851 census the total number of Irish speakers had declined by then to just over one and a half million. By the end of the century, the number of Irish speakers had declined to 600,000. An even more telling figure was the fall in the percentage of Irish speakers among the under-10 population, which had declined to 3.5% of the total.

The Society for the Preservation of the Irish Language, which was established in 1876, managed to gain recognition for Irish at every level of the education system from primary school level to university. In 1893 Gaeilge, or the Gaelic League was formed and managed to create a mass movement of support for the Irish language.

Irish was fully documented and the first Official Standard Irish published in 1958.

Irish is available as an option on Google Translate.

Connemara Warfare

Irish clans often engaged in raids against their neighbours. These, depending on the seriousness of the engagement, usually consisted of small raiding parties.

For larger set piece battles the preferred means of attacking an enemy was an all-out assault. The adoption of regular formation, shoulder to shoulder, forming a solid front with shields and spears came as military tactics (and the odd defeat) brought change.

Cavalry was not widely used until the arrival of the Normans. Chiefs and clan leaders went into battle on horseback. Each horseman had at least one footman to attend him called a gilla or dalteen armed only with a dart or javelin.

Two kinds of foot-soldiers are often mentioned in Irish military records, the kern and galloglasses. The kern were light-armed soldiers: they wore headpieces, and fought with a skian (a dagger or short sword) and with a javelin.

The Irish, unlike the Scots, generally wore clothes when fighting. Soldiers thought likely to desert were tied together at the ankle to prevent them deserting but allowing them to fight.

The galloglasses are mentioned after the Anglo-Norman invasion. These were  heavy-armed infantry, wearing a coat of mail and an iron helmet, with a long sword by the side, and carrying in the hand a broad, heavy, battle axe.

It was common to use war trumpets in Irish battles. These were used to signal the troops as to what to do in battle but also as means of communications in camps.

The Irish clans also had a clan war chant or cry that they used when charging into battle.  The use of sea power is rarely recorded in Irish military history.

The most famous user of naval military resources was Grace O Malley or Granuaile ( 1530  to 1603) who commanded the Connemara Coastal Defense and Anti Piracy Force in Elizabethan times.

Connemara Housing

Housing in Connemara has improved radically since the Devon Commission report in 1845. Most urban and rural housing stock is now up to modern standards.  

The Devon Commission (Commission on Occupation of Land (Ireland)  1843 to 1845) used 4 categories to describe habitations in rural Connemara.
52.8% were in the lowest class. These were all mud cabins with one room and these housed 53% of all families. They were generally without windows or a proper chimney.
37.6% were in the next class. These were mud cottages with 2 to 4 rooms and had one or more windows.
9% were in the next class. These were classed as a good farm house, or in town, a house in a small street having from five to nine rooms and windows.
0.6% were all houses of a higher quality.

Most farmers built their own houses. The custom was to place almost every building below the level of the adjacent ground. The houses had a step down into the interior which led to a high level of dampness.  Cabins were usually built of clay or sod on a foundation of stone. They used a slope at right-angles to the contours so that the top ends were set against a hillside or large rocky outcrop. Many had rounded corners making them an elongated oval.  Horizontal bands or tops of bog-fir, sally or heather, were pegged into the thatch at intervals.

In Connemara the scallop or scobe thatch was secured by bent rods which were hidden except at the ridge and along the eaves, where they were worked into lozenge patterns.

Housing stock gradually improved in the post famine period due to improving social and economic circumstances.  In the 20th and 21st century significant personal investment and government incentives helped to bring the majority of Connemara housing stock up to modern standards.

Between 1946 and 1979, over 420,000 customers in rural Ireland were connected to the national grid as part of the Rural Electrification Scheme. On 8 September 2003, two of the last remaining places in Ireland unconnected to the national grid – Inishturbot and Inishturk islands in Connemara were finally connected to the national grid.

Connemara Genetics

In Connaught, almost all men (98.3%), carry a particular gene (haplogroup 1) that links them directly back to the ancient population of Ireland 4,200 years ago.  
10,000 years ago most of the population of Western Europe carried the haplogroup 1 gene.  Through the movement and mixing of peoples, this gene was diluted and today it is found in relatively few people in Europe.  
In 2007 Scientists in Trinity College studied the genes on the Y chromosome which is passed from father to son. By performing a number of genetic tests they were able to identify a particular genetic pattern in the Y chromosome of the Irish.   They estimated that most of the genetic variation in Ireland has accumulated over the past 4,200 years following a rapid growth of the population at this time. This is the time of the Early Bronze Age in Ireland.
The scientists have shown that most of the genes present in Ireland today came from the people who were living at the time of Newgrange. These people were the descendants of the ancient hunter-gatherers of Europe.
They also found a gradient from east to west in Europe. The lowest frequency of the gene is in Turkey and the highest frequency in Ireland where 78.1% of all men have the gene.
The most striking finding was that in Connaught, the western most point of Europe, almost all men (98.3%) carry this particular gene. This indicates a relative genetic isolation of the Connaught population over time.
The frequency of the gene varies according to the original source of the family name. For Gaelic surnames names the frequency is highest whilst Scottish surnamed people have the lowest frequency of the gene.

January Weather

Rain Fall (mm)  120, 
Rain Days 12 , 
Average Rain day rain (mm) 10 , 
Snow Days  2 , 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 83 , 
Average Wind Speed (KM) 19, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 3, 
Average Daylight Hours 8, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 38.

February Weather

Rain Fall (mm) 112 , 
Rain Days 10, 
Average Rain day rain (mm) 11, 
Snow Days  3, 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 72, 
Average Wind Speed (KM) 19, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 4, 
Average Daylight Hours 9, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 44

March Weather

Rain Fall (mm) 111, 
Rain Days 12, 
Average Rain day rain (mm) 9, 
Snow Days 2, 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 69, 
Average Wind Speed (KM) 19, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 5, 
Average Daylight Hours 11, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 45.

April Weather

Rain Fall (mm) 60, 
Rain Days 9, 
Average Rain day rain (mm) 7, 
Snow Days  1, 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 59, 
Average Wind Speed (KM) 17, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 7, 
Average Daylight Hours 13, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 53

May Weather

Rain Fall (mm) 71, 
Rain Days 8, 
Average Rain day rain (mm) 9, 
Snow Days  0, 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 94, 
Average Wind Speed (KM) 15, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 7, 
Average Daylight Hours 14, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 50.

June Weather

Rain Fall (mm) 69, 
Rain Days 9, 
Average Rain day rain (mm) 8, 
Snow Days  0, 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 57, 
Average Wind Speed (KM) 15, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 8, 
Average Daylight Hours 16, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 50.

July Weather

Rain Fall (mm) 54, 
Rain Days 10, 
Average Rain day rain (mm) 5, 
Snow Days  0, 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 46, 
Average Wind Speed (KM) 13, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 5, 
Average Daylight Hours 17, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 29.

August Weather

Rain Fall (mm) 93, 
Rain Days 10, Average 
Rain day rain (mm) 9, 
Snow Days  0, 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 50, 
Average Wind Speed (KM) 13, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 5, 
Average Daylight Hours 15, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 33.

September Weather

Rain Fall (mm) 86, 
Rain Days 8, 
Average Rain day rain (mm) 11, 
Snow Days  0, 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 56, 
Wind Speed (KM) 14, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 5, 
Average Daylight Hours 14, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 36.

October Weather

Rain Fall (mm) 132, 
Rain Days 10, 
Average Rain day rain (mm) 13, 
Snow Days  0, 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 54, 
Average Wind Speed (KM) 15, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 4, 
Average Daylight Hours 12, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 33

November Weather

Rain Fall (mm) 110, 
Rain Days 10, 
Average Rain day rain (mm) 11, 
Snow Days  0, 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 57, 
Average Wind Speed (KM) 16, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 3, 
Average Daylight Hours 10, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 30.

December Weather

Rain Fall (mm) 129, 
Rain Days 10, 
Average Rain day rain (mm) 13, 
Snow Days  2, 
Maximum Wind Speed (Km) 83, 
Average Wind Speed (KM) 17, 
Hours of Clear Sunshine 3, 
Average Daylight Hours 8, 
% Sunshine / Daylight hours 38.

Weather Records By Year

The various extremes of weather in Connemara have been recorded since 2010 at the Culliaghbeg weather station. 

2010 Records
All Time Lowest Daily Maximum Temperature 0.0 °C  at 00:00 on 19 December 2010 . 
All Time Highest Humidity 99 % at 18:28 on 25 October 2010 . 

2011 Records
All Time Highest Wind speed (gust) 159.2 Km/h (98.9 mph) at 14:40 on 03 February 2011 . 

2012  Records
All Time Lowest Temperature -10.4 °C at 20:53 on 17 November 2012, 
All Time High Temperature Range 19.9 °C on 17 November 2012, 
All Time Low Wind Chill -18.7 °C at 20:53 on 17 November 2012 , 
All Time Low Apparent Temperature -18.5 °C at 20:53 on 17 November 2012, 
All Time Low Dew Point -30.7 °C at 20:53 on 17 November 2012 , 
All Time Greatest Monthly Rainfall 1471.2 mm On 1 November 2012.    

2013 Records
All Time Highest Temperature 32.9 °C at 16:09 on 11 July 2013 , 
All Time Low Temperature Range 0.8 °C on 04 January 2013, 
All Time High Heat Index 35.9 °C at 16:08 on 11 July 2013, 
All Time High Apparent Temperature 36.8 °C at 16:08 on 11 July 2013, 
All Time High Dew Point 22.5 °C  at 12:16 on 12 July 2013 , 
All Time Lowest Humidity 15 % at 23:20 on 29 November 2013 , 
All Time Highest Rainfall Rate 918.0 mm/hr at 22:46 on 15 April 2013 , 
All Time Highest Hourly Rainfall 603.9 mm at 22:48 on 15 April 2013 , 
All Time Greatest Daily Rainfall 1227.9 mm on 24 November 2013 . 
Longest Dry Period 28 Days to 03 August 2013 , 
All Time Highest Wind speed (average) 85,62 Km/h (53.2 mph) at 01:28 on 16 April 2013 , 
All Time Highest Pressure 1043.6 mb at 21:39 on 25 November 2013. 

2014 Records  
All Time Highest Daily Minimum Temperature 17.1 °C at 22:49 on 23 July 2014 
Longest Period Of Rain Every Day 91 Days to 03 March 2014 
All Time Highest Daily Wind Run 771.2 Km (479.2 Miles on 24 March 2014 
All Time Lowest Pressure 946.9 mb at 07:02 on 08 February 2014:

All Weather Records

The various extremes of weather in Connemara have been recorded since 2010 at the Culliaghbeg weather station. This is a privately run weather station. 

Highest Temperature 32.9 °C  at 16:09 on 11 July 2013. 
Lowest Temperature -10.4 °C at 20:53 on 17 November 2012. 
Highest Daily Minimum Temperature 17.1 °C at 22:49 on 23 July 2014. 
Lowest Daily Maximum Temperature 0.0 °C  at 00:00 on 19 December 2010. 
Lowest Temperature Range 0.8 °C on 04 January 2013. 
Highest Temperature Range 19.9 °C on 17 November 2012 . 
Highest Heat Index 35.9 °C at 16:08 on 11 July 2013. 
Lowest Wind Chill -18.7 °C at 20:53 on 17 November 2012. 
Highest Apparent Temperature 36.8 °C at 16:08 on 11 July 2013 . 
Lowest Apparent Temperature -18.5 °C at 20:53 on 17 November 2012. 
Highest Dew Point 22.5 °C at 12:16 on 12 July 2013. 
Lowest Dew Point -30.7 °C at 20:53 on 17 November 2012 . 
Highest Humidity 99 % at 18:28 on 25 October 2010. 
Lowest Humidity 15 % at 23:20 on 29 November 2013 .   
Highest Rainfall Rate 918.0 mm/hr at 22:46 on 15 April 2013. 
Highest Hourly Rainfall 603.9 mm at 22:48 on 15 April 2013, 
Highest Daily Rainfall 1227.9 mm on 24 November 2012, 
Highest Monthly Rainfall 1471.2 mm on 1 November 2012, 
Longest Dry Period 28 Days to 03 August 2013, 
Longest Period Of Rain Every Day 91 Days to 03 March 2014,   
Highest Wind Speed (gust) 159 Km/h (98.8 mph) at 14:40 on 03 February 2011, 
Highest Wind Speed (average) 85,62 Km/h (53.2 mph) at 01:28 on 16 April 2013 , 
Highest Daily Wind Run 771,2 Km, (479.2 Miles) on 24 March 2014,           
Highest Pressure 1043.6 mb at 21:39 on 25 November 2013, 
Lowest Pressure 946.9 mb at 07:02 on 08 February 2014.

Tully Mountain Lake Creature

Tradition says that there are lake monsters in the lakes on the top of Tully Mountain. There are a few small mountain lakes located near the summit.

Lough Shanakeever Lake Creature 1945

Shanakeever Lough has been the site of a number of reports of sightings of unknown lake creatures. The first reported sighting was in 1945. The beast was  reported to be horse like with an elongated body.  Further sightings were made in 1963 and 1982 and reported a large eel like creature in the lake.

Lough Pibrum Lake Creature 1974

Lough Pibrum (Pybeln) is a mountain lake, located in Glanmore - a 15 minute drive from Carna village.In the 1970s three local men cutting turf spotted a large black creature in the late. They also saw what the describe as a "trail of slime" leading to the lake from nearby high ground.Lough Pybeln is located near Carna and Kilkerrin, between two mountains. The event took place in the summer sometime in the 1970s.  The man explained to that he'd been cutting turf with his father and cousin near the lake around 8pm when they noticed a large 40 foot object out in the lake.  It resembled the bottom of a pucan (type of boat) "turned upside down, just about to submerge".  There's one factor from this sighting that stands out in particular: they saw "slime" from the mountain down to the lake.

Lough Nahooin Lake Creature 1948

Lough Nahooin is a small mountain lake, located in Leagaun - a 7 minute drive from Claddaghduff Church. The creature in Nahooin Lough was first sighted in 1948 by two local men. Another sighting of what has been described as a large "eel like" creature was made in 1968. During the Loch Ness Investigation Bureau investigation (1969)  of the Lough Fadda sighting a local farmer reported having recently seen the Nahioon Lough creature on land.

Lough Fadda Lake Creature 1954

The first sighting of an unknown creature in Lough Fadda was in the late 1940s. Few Details exist of this sighting. In 1954 a group of local anglers encountered a large animal than swam towards them and reacted to their moving away from the shore. The sighting was investigated by the Lough Ness Investigation Bureau on two occasions.

Lough Fadda Lake Creature 1947

The first sighting of an unknown creature in Lough Fadda was in the late 1940s. Few Details exist of this sighting. In 1954 a group of local anglers encountered a large animal than swam towards them and reacted to their moving away from the shore. The sighting was investigated by the Lough Ness Investigation Bureau on two occasions.

Lough Auna Lake Creature 1985

In the late 1800s a sighting of a "horse eel" was reported by a local woman who was collecting turf by the lake edge. More reports of a similar creature were made in the early to mid 1900s. In 1980 multiple people saw a large eel like creature swimming in the lake. In 1985 an off duty soldier saw a similar creature in the lake.

Atlantic Salmon

The Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) is found in the northern Atlantic Ocean and in rivers that flow into the north Atlantic. Major Connemara salmon fisheries: Erriff river, Ballynahinch river. In Connemara fishing for salmon is highly regulated. The Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) is found in the northern Atlantic Ocean and in rivers that flow into the north Atlantic. It has also been introduced to the north Pacific. Atlantic salmon breed in the rivers of: Western Europe from Northern Portugal north to Norway, Iceland, Greenland, and the east coast of North America from Connecticut in the United States north to northern Labrador and Arctic Canada. Atlantic salmon which have escaped from the aquaculture industry have also been found breeding in rivers tributary to the Pacific Ocean in British Columbia on Canada s west coast. The name, Salmo salar, is from the Latin   Salmo  , meaning salmon, and   salar  , meaning   leaper,   however a more likely meaning   resident of salt water.   It is also known as bay salmon, black salmon, caplin-scull salmon, fiddler, grilse, grilt, kelt, landlocked salmon, ouananiche, outside salmon, parr, Sebago salmon, silver salmon, slink, smolt, spring salmon or winnish. Atlantic salmon in general are migratory. They spawn in freshwater streams where the eggs hatch and juveniles grow through several distinct stages before they migrate to the sea to mature. They then return to their original stream to spawn. Some examples of fully freshwater (  landlocked  ) populations of the species exist. None are known in Connemara. The Atlantic salmon constructs a nest or   redd   in the gravel bed of a stream. The female creates a powerful downdraught of water with her tail near the gravel to excavate a depression. After she and a male fish have respectively shed eggs and milt (sperm) upstream of the depression, the female again uses her tail, this time to shift gravel to cover the eggs and milt which have lodged in the depression. Unlike Pacific salmon, the Atlantic salmon does not die after reproducing and can return numerous times during its life. Once hatched the freshwater life phases of Atlantic salmon vary, depending on the river, from between one and eight years.  In northern rivers they tend to stay for 4 years but in more southern rivers they leave after one year. The longest stay has been recorded in Canada where smolts up to 8 years old have been recorded. River temperature seems to be a determining factor. The warmer the river the earlier the smolt migrates to the sea. The first phase of the Atlantic salmon  s life is the Alevin stage. The newly hatched salmon stay in the breeding ground and uses the remaining nutrients in their yolk sac as food. Their gills develop and they become active hunters once the yolk sac is empty. They then become fry. At this stage they grow and leave the breeding ground in search of food. Juveniles start eating tiny invertebrates, and as they mature, they may occasionally eat small fish. Some have been known to eat salmon eggs. The most commonly eaten foods include caddis flies, blackflies, mayflies, and stoneflies. The final freshwater stage is when they become Parr and prepare to migrate to the Atlantic as Smolt. In the fresh water phase up to 40% of the young salmon are eaten by trout. Birds and other fish also prey on them. Their migration generally happens between March and June. During this time they must adapt to increased water as they approach the sea. The salmon spend up to 4 years in the Atlantic Ocean mostly on the continental shelf off Greenland. and grow rapidly. Their major food sources are Arctic squid, sand eels, amphipods, Arctic shrimp, and herring.  During this phase they are prey to humans, Seals, Greenland sharks, skate, cod, and halibut. Once above around 250 g, the fish no longer become prey for birds and many fish, although seals do prey upon them. Seals that commonly eat Atlantic salmon are the grey and common seals. Survivability to this stage has been estimated at between 14% and 53%. During this 4 year period the Atlantic salmon enter the grilse phase and they prepare to return to their original stream. It is thought that the unique chemical signature of the stream is a major role in them finding the exact stream in which they hatched. Atlantic salmon change colour during their lives.  During their early freshwater time they have blue and red spots. Once they mature they change to a silver blue sheen. When they reproduce, males take on a slight green or red colour. Wild salmon disappeared from many rivers during the twentieth century due to overfishing and habitat change. By 2000 the numbers of Atlantic salmon had dropped to critically low levels. The main commercial value of the remaining wild Atlantic salmon stocks is as sports fish. Sport fishing communities, mainly from Iceland and Scandinavia, have joined in the North Atlantic Salmon Fund (NASF) to buy away commercial quotas in an effort to save the wild species of salmon. The commercial fishery of Atlantic salmon has virtually disappeared due to extensive habitat damage and overfishing. Wild fish make up only 0.5% of the Atlantic salmon available in world fish markets. In the 1950s, salmon from rivers in the US and Canada, as well as from Europe, were discovered to gather in the sea around Greenland and the Faroe Islands. A commercial fishing industry was established, taking salmon using drift nets. After an initial series of record annual catches, the numbers crashed: between 1979 and 1990, catches fell from four million to 700,000. The market is supplied with farmed salmon from Ireland, (Connemara having the second largest commercial salmon farm in Europe), Norway, Chile, Canada, the UK, Faroe Islands, Russia and Tasmania in Australia. Salmon fishing has been controlled by legislation for over 800 years since the time of Edward 1 of England.

Atlantic cod

The Atlantic Cod can grow to 2 meters in length and weigh up to 96 kilograms (212 lb). It can live for 25 years and usually attains sexual maturity between ages two and four.  It has a colouring of brown to green, with spots on the dorsal side, shading to silver ventrally. A lateral line is clearly visible.   Its habitat ranges from the shoreline down to the continental shelf.  The   Atlantic cod   is labelled VU (vulnerable) on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Several cod stocks collapsed in the 1990s (declined by >95% of maximum historical biomass) and have failed to recover even with the cessation of fishing.  Adult cod form spawning aggregations from late winter to spring. Females release their eggs in batches, and males compete to fertilize them. Fertilized eggs drift with ocean currents and develop into larvae.  Atlantic cod are a shoaling species and move in large size-structured aggregations led by larger scouts who lead the shoals direction, particularly during post-spawning migrations inshore for feeding. Cod actively feed during migration and changes in shoal structure occur when food is encountered.   Atlantic cod are apex predators and adults are generally free from the concerns of predation. Juvenile cod, however, may serve as prey for adult cod, which sometimes practice cannibalism. In the southern North Sea, 1 to 2% (by weight) of stomach contents for cod larger than 10 cm consisted to juvenile cod. In the northern North Sea, cannibalism was higher, at 10%. Other reports of cannibalism have estimated as high as 56% of the diet consists of juvenile cod.  Atlantic cod have been recorded to swim at speeds of a minimum of 2 to 5 cm/s and a maximum of 21 to 54 cm/s with a mean swimming speed of 9 to 17 cm/s. In one hour, cod have been recorded to cover a mean range of 99 to 226 square meters. Swimming speed was higher during the day than at night. This is reflected in the fact that cod more actively search for food during the day.      

Connemara Diet

Connemara is now widely recognised as a source of some of the finest ingredients available for modern cooking. Many are part of a long culinary tradition.

The Irish diet, before the introduction of the potato was varied and seasonal. Large amounts of meat, fish, milk products, eggs and wild game / vegetables were eaten.   For the first 8,000 years the people who inhabited Ireland are believed to have been predominately hunter / gathers of food. 

The quantity of food available varied greatly from season to season and from year to year. From approximately 5000 ago the domestication of animals, forest clearance and the continued collection of wild foods provided the major source of food. It was around this time that the cultivation of a variety of edible grass seed and leaf plants began. The management of domestic animals and the long term storage of food became common as did settled communities. There is pollen evidence that for periods up to 200 years the level of agricultural activity seemed to fluctuate. During low periods the consumption of meat and dairy products increased as the inhabitants returned to a greater reliance on livestock, hunting and gathering. These fluctuations continued until the 3rd century AD when a permanent expansion of agriculture occurred.

Milk, cheese, meat, cereals and some vegetables formed the main part of the Irish diet from prehistoric times up until the introduction of the potato. The types of food eaten depended on whether a community was inland or on the coast. 

Coastal communities collected a variety of shellfish (razorfish, cockles, clams, oysters, limpets, periwinkles, mussels, prawns and crabs) added seaweed, some herbs and vegetables to make a soup/stew, which was left simmering for hours then eaten with Oat bread. Fish, was usually cooked by spit roasting, and basted with honey.

Cattle dominated the rural economy. The number of cattle that a man had showed his wealth. They were mainly kept for blood and milk.  . Analysis of the animal bones found at Dun Alinnne, County Kildare showed that 54% were from cattle, 36% from pigs, 7% from sheep and goats and 2.5% from horses . The majority of the cattle bones were from calves or elderly cows indicating that cattle were kept mainly for milk and blood. Beef (salted and was known as winter food in Brehon Law), pork, wild deer (venison) and mutton were the most common meats consumed up. 

Venison in the diet declined from the 8th century on due to over hunting. There is also evidence that horse was used as a source of meat. Cattle blood was also used in the production of food. Healthy cattle were bled from the neck, the blood was then mixed with meal, and it was then cooked to produce black pudding. This was salted or dried for use as protein in the winter months. Pork was very popular and is often the main meat recorded as being eaten at feasts in major houses. Venison, beef, goat, and salmon were also popular. 

Other meats mentioned are Badger which was considered a delicacy, seal and porpoise. Porpoise (sea pig) was reported to have been preferred to pork by coastal communities. Hare was a common meat dish in Ireland. Rabbit (introduced by the Normans) also became a major meat consumed in Ireland. A popular way of preparing Hare and rabbit was to boil them in a pot of rancid butter.

Fowl, without plucking or removal of the intestine, were cooked by covering them with mud or blue clay and put into a hot fire. When cooked the clay casing was broken open. The feathers and skin came away with the clay. Hedgehogs were also cooked like this.

Milk in various forms was consumed in large quantities. Fresh milk, curds (?white meats   were known as summer foods), cheeses and butter were the main milk foodstuffs. Butter was allowed to go rancid and was stored in barrels in bogs. Sheeps milk cheese was also a key foodstuff.  Milk was also boiled with seaweed (carrageen). This made the milk thicken. Honey and seasonal fruits were used to add flavour.

Fish was an important part of Irish diet. Atlantic salmon was considered to be the best fish of all. Trout, pike, perch, ells and roach were also popular fresh water fish. Sea fish such as cod, hake, whiting, mackerel and skate as well as shellfish were also eaten. Herrings and mackerel were caught, salted / dried and then stored for winter use. They were also traded with inland communities. Fish were usually cooked over an open fire. Apple wood was a favoured wood for cooking fish. Fish stew was also popular. The fish was put in a pot and cooked with vegetables, seaweed and herbs. 

Eggs were eaten in large quantities. The most popular were those of ducks and wild sea birds. Goose eggs were a delicacy. They were usually eaten on special occasions like Easter and mid summer s day. Eggs were cooked by frying them on hot stones with butter or boiled / poached in a hot water with salt and fermented fruit juice.

Eight types of cereals (were cultivated by the Irish. The four most common ones were Oats, barley, Rye and Wheat. , Their use varied from place to place and the social status of a person also mattered. Bread does not seem to have been eaten in large quantities. Oats and barley the most common grains used in bread. Rye and wheat were usually mixed to produce a flour used in a staple Celtic bread called Maslin. 

White bread made of only wheat flour was produced on special occasions. White bread is mentioned in Brehon Laws.  The womans cake (bairgin banfuine) should only be half the size or thickness of the man?s cake (bairgin ferfuine ). The mans cake should only be half the size of the guest?s cake (bairgan indriud). Scones were also made. These used wheat flour and burned seaweed, sour milk. As a raising agent acid extracted from fruit was added.  Lumps of the mixture were wrapped in wild cabbage leaves and then baked. 

Bread was also cooked in the cauldron over the cooling embers without a lid. The cauldron was greased and the loaf placed inside to cook overnight on the cooling embers of the fire. This was common practice across rural Ireland up to the late 20th century. 

Porridge was a common use for oats. It was made either thick or liquid and would be eaten hot or cold.

Fruit and vegetables were generally gathered in the wild. Wild onions, garlic, wild leeks, sorrel, nettles, and watercress were some of the vegetables most common in the ancient Irish diet. Seasonal fruits and nuts were also important. Sloe, wild cherry, raspberry, blackberry, strawberry, rowan, whortleberries, crab apples, Hazel nuts, and elderberries were widely eaten when available. Edible fungus (mushrooms) were gathered and either eaten fresh or dried for use in the winter. 

Potatoes were introduced in the 16th century and rapidly became an Irish dietary staple. The availability of a high energy, high volume crop such as the potato led to a rapid growth in population and also to its decimation when blight caused the potato crops to fail especially in 1845 to 1847 (the great famine)

Apples seem to have been the widely cultivated fruit. Brehon Law said that any tenant who lost his land had to be compensated for any apple trees he had planted. From the 8th century on vegetables were cultivated in the lubgort or vegetable garden. 

A vegetable called cainenn, a type of onion was popular. Its bulbs and stem were eaten raw or cooked. Immus (celery) and Foltchep (a kind of onion / chive / leek) were also widely cultivated. Meacan and cerrbacan (carrots and parsnips) were common root vegetables. A type of wild cabbage and kale were also cultivated. 

The Norman introduced peas and beans and these were widely grown all over Ireland. Turnips first appear in the 12th century. Hazelnuts were collected and used in cakes as a ground meal, or eaten raw. (Salaman 1949). Crem  a wild garlic was used in most dishes and as a vegetable.  

Alcoholic drinks were also known to the Irish. Mead which is made by fermented honey and water with herbs and spices was a key drink of the ancient Irish. It was drunk before the start and after a feast. Metheglin, was a special form of mead made with honey, thyme, rosemary and sweet briar. Sloe wine was made by mashing sloe berries, boiling them in water. The mix was then left for one day at room temperature for yeasts to settle. Honey was then added. The mix was buried for 6 weeks underground in an airtight container.  It was then removed, strained through straw and drunk as wine.

The diet of poor people was varied. The main meat they ate was salted pork. This was the cheapest of the meats to purchase and was eaten all year round. Pigs blood was made into puddings and stored. 

Up to the arrival of the Normans ordinary people also hunted. This added venison, hedgehogs, wild goats, wild boar, wild fowl and river / sea fish to their diet. Later, in areas controlled by the Normans such hunting was largely forbidden.

In Connemara Porpoise (sea pig) was preferred over other meats as the main dish at feasts.

19th century improvements in the roads and rail system in Connemara allowed the introduction of new products into the local diet. The arrival of modern food logistics, supermarkets and the entry to the EU in 1972 greatly expanded the variety of ingredients available to the local chefs and cooks.  

A recent trend has been in foraging and using unconventional, forgotten and Organic ingredients in new and exciting recipes available form the many excellent restaurants across Connemara.

Clothing Women

The traditional Connemara clothing seems to have remained relatively unchanged up to the mid 19 th century. However Variations on the basic dress items emerged eg Connemara shawl.  The common items of clothing for Connemara women included: Leine Mna : ankle length linen dress decorated at cuffs, hem and neck, close fitting sleeves, one colour. Ionar Mna : over dress or tunic, woollen, shorter than leine. Brat : rectangular cloak made of wool, single colour usually fringed and decorated with embroidery at hems. These were at least same length as the wearer s height.  Caille : veil or head covering. This would appear to have been a fashion or modesty item worn by most women. Young girls would probably not have worn veils as a rule. Crois : Belt of woollen tablet weaving or leather. Mala : Pouch or small bag worn on the crois. Broga : Shoes of leather or hide. The availability of cheap factory produced cloth and affordable postal services rapidly changed the fabrics and dress habits of Connemara women in the last half of the 19th century.

Clothing Men

Clothing for men was quite similar to that for women. Linen and wool were the major fabrics used prior to the availability of Cotton in the mid 19th century. Variations of the following items would have been in common use as clothing in Connemara into the 20th century.  Leine Fir : Long linen tunic as for female   Ionar Fir : Tunic made of wool  Brat : Rectangular woollen cloak, fringe. Same as the wearers height. Trius : Knee length trousers  Osain : Tight trousers similar to hose, with a stirrup under the foot.  Inar : Jacket which was short and could be sleeveless or short sleeved.  Short cloak : Should only reach to below the waist. Full length brat should not be combined with jacket and trews.  Broga : Leather shoes, Either one piece or else sole and upper.  Brat : Long cloak, about same length as wearers height  Leine Fir : Which seems to have been worn gathered about the waist when working or fighting.  Crois : Belt, usually of leather but could be of woven wool.   In the late 19th century the availability of ready made clothes and shoes from the factories of Ireland and England  had a major impact and change the types of fabric and clothing available and worn by people.   Equally important was the introduction of catalogue buying that followed the introduction of an affordable postal service in Ireland in 1840.

Clothing Grooming

Clothing was important as a sign of rank and wealth and what was work was at one time regulated by rules as in  Leabhar na gCeart  The Book of Rights. A Translation can be found at the following URL: ( http://www.maryjones.us/ctexts/cert.html). Going barefoot in Irish society was considered indecent and shoes were a symbol of rank. Shoes could be rougher and simpler for the lower strata of society and more refined and decorated for high status. The high status men avoided having a moustache. They wore a beard or were clean shaven.   It was considered indecent to have more than a hands width between the top of the ear and the hairline.

Music Bodhran

The bodhran is an Irish frame drum ranging from 25 to 65 cm (10   to 26  ) in diameter. It has only recently (1960s) entered into common use in traditional music.   There are no known references to this particular name for a drum prior to the 17th century. Various drums (played with either hands or sticks) have been used in Ireland since ancient times. The bodhran itself did not gain wide recognition as a legitimate musical instrument until the Irish traditional music resurgence in the 1960s in which it became known through the music of Sean o Riada and others.  It is generally constructed from a goatskin head tacked to one side of a circular wooden frame. (synthetic heads or other animal skins are sometimes used). The other side is open-ended for one hand to be placed against the inside of the drum head to control the pitch and timbre.  One or two crossbars, sometimes removable, may be inside the frame, but this is increasingly rare on modern instruments.

Music Bones or Spoons

The bones are a musical instrument (more specifically, a folk instrument) which, at the simplest, consists of a pair of animal bones, or pieces of wood or a similar material. Sections of large rib bones and lower leg bones are the most commonly used   Bones are typically about 5   to 7   (15 - 21 cm) in length, but can be much longer, and they are often curved, roughly resembling miniature barrel staves. Bones can also be flat, for example by the cutting of a yardstick. They are played by holding them between one s fingers, convex surfaces facing one another, and moving one s wrist in such a way that they knock against each other. A player may use a pair of bones in each hand, or just a single pair in one hand. The bones may be replaced by spoons which are played in the same manner.

Music Button accordions

Button accordions are widely used in Irish traditional music and are also popular in many countries where they are also used mainly for playing popular music and traditional folk music, and modern offshoots of these genres.   In Ireland, melodeon (Irish: mileoidean or an bosca) is reserved for instruments with a single row of melody buttons (a  one-row   instrument), while instruments with two or three rows are called button accordions (often simply accordions).

Music Concertina

A concertina is a free-reed musical instrument, like the various accordions and the harmonica. It has a bellows, and buttons typically on both ends of it.    The concertina was developed in England and Germany, most likely independently. The English version was invented in 1829 by Sir Charles Wheatstone, who filed a patent for an improved version in 1844. The English concertina is typically held by placing the thumbs through thumb straps and the little fingers on metal finger rests, leaving three fingers free for playing. Alternatively, both the fourth and little fingers support the metal finger rest, leaving two fingers for playing.

Music Celtic Harp

The Celtic harp is a triangular harp traditional to Brittany, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. In Ireland and Scotland it was a wire-strung instrument requiring great skill and long practice to play, and was associated with the Gaelic ruling class. In the Republic of Ireland, it appears on the coins and coat of arms.   A characteristic feature if the celtic harp is the metal strings. Historical sources mention various types of wire, including brass and iron. It has been suggested that gold and silver strings were sometimes also used. The wires are attached to a massive sound box typically carved from a single log, commonly of willow, although other woods including alder and poplar have been used in antique harps. This harp also had a reinforced curved pillar and a substantial neck, flanked with thick brass cheek bands. The strings, usually played with the fingernails, produced a brilliant ringing sound.

Music Fiddle

A fiddle is a bowed string musical instrument, most often called the violin. Fiddle refers to violins used to play folk music. Galway fiddling is slower than Sligo or Donegal traditions, with a heavier emphasis on ornamentation. Additionally, tunes are occasionally played in Eb or Bb to match the tonality of flat pipes.   Compared to classical violin, Irish fiddler tend to make little use of vibrato except for slow airs, and even then it is used relatively sparingly. Like the rest of Irish traditional music tradition, melodies are embellished through forms of ornamentation, such as rolls, trebles, and cuts.  Irish Folk music fiddling styles include:  Donegal fiddling from the northwest in Ulster, which features mazurkas and a Scottish-influenced repertoire including Strathspey and Highland Fling dances. Fiddlers tend to play fast and make heavy use of staccato bowing and may from time to time   play the bass,   meaning a second fiddler may play a melody an octave below where a first fiddler is playing it.  Sligo fiddling from northern Connacht, which like Donegal fiddling tends to be fast, but with a bouncier feel to the bowing.  Clare fiddling from northern Munster, which tends to be played near the slower Galway tempo yet with a greater emphasis on the melody itself rather than ornamentation.  Sliabh Luachra fiddling from the southwest in Munster, characterized by a unique repertoire of polkas and slides, as well as the use of double stops and drones as well as playing the melody in two octaves as in Donegal.

Music Irish flute

The vast majority of traditional Irish flute players use a wooden, simple-system flute. This is a conical-bore, simple-system wooden flute of the type favoured by classical flautists of the early 19th century, or to a flute of modern manufacture derived from this design (often with modifications to optimise its use in Irish Traditional Music.   The modern playing technique within  Irish Traditional Music has much in common with tin whistle technique. This involves using a number of ornaments to embellish the music, including cuts, strikes and rolls. Common ornaments and articulations include:  Cut and strike (or tap) Cut and strike   Cut   is rapidly lifting and putting down a finger;   Strike   is rapidly hitting and lifting an open hole with a finger.  Rolls A roll is a note with first a cut and then a strike. Alternatively, a roll can be considered as a group of notes of identical pitch and duration with different articulations.  Cranns Cranns (or crans) are ornaments borrowed from the Uilleann piping tradition. They are similar to rolls except that only cuts are used, not taps or strikes.