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Murlough is cared for as Ireland's first nature reserve since 1967, the fragile 6000 year old sand dune system offers some lovely walks. Due to the reserves wild nature you can discover birds, flowers, butterflies and more, all overlooked by the rounded peaks of the Mourne Mountains to the south.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

The Minotaur of Murlough

A small and friendly minotaur has been discovered on the reserve!  It was wandering happily across our path a fortnight ago, and so we picked it up to admire it and marvel at it's fuzzy bits and impressive horns.  After a professional photo session I returned it to its labyrinth (to North Point, from whence it came).

It is a male Minotaur Beetle Typhaeus typhoeus and is locally rare.

These critters are unmistakable and bimble about eating rabbit droppings and dung.  They live on sandy dune-heaths such as Murlough and dig deep tunnels worthy of a real Minotaur, which they defend with their impressive prongs.  Look out for them in spring.

Imagine the conservation status we'd have if we had a real Minotaur?  I bet they'd be at the very least UKBAP.  I invite anyone who wants to make a pretend ARKive site with mythical beasts on it to post a link here. 

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