An Coinigéar, Part I

An Coinigéar, or The Cunnigar, is a 2.5 km long spit of land that stretches out south to north across the Dungarvan Bay from An Rinn (The Ring) Peninsula, and ends not far from Dungarvan Quay. As it was specified in a 1537 document, its widest part measures “in bredthe one boweshot“, and the narrowest part is about 10m. Coinigéar means “rabbit warren”. I saw many rabbits when I turned to the car park. It was an early morning, and their ears looked transparent in the morning sun. During my walk, I only saw a few rabbit holes and droppings, but I had a feeling I was being watched 🙂

There are many stories told about An Coinigéar, and there is a ghost whom no one has seen so far. The ghost is guarding a hidden treasure, so if you find it some day, you will be possibly able to claim to have seen the ghost, I guess …

I am sharing a beautiful video by @fardinger   It will give you a better look.

Dungarvan Bay is dry as far out as I can see.

I start on the eastern side of The Cunnigar, but later move across. There is only one car parked, and I see a person with a dog in a distance. I have at least 6 hours to get to the end and back.

Thousands of local and migratory birds are feeding on tideline on both sides of The Cunnigar, but this time I just acknowledge their presence and keep walking. It is my first time here, and I only want to get a general idea of the place.

I see a couple of Ragwort plants and a Cinnabar moth caterpillar. To my surprise, there is not a single moth around at this time.

However I found another brightly colored day moth – a Six-spot burnet. There were thousands of them.

I also found many papery cocoons – full and abandoned.

Males and females of this moths look similar. Sometimes a male is sitting next to the cocoon patiently waiting for the virgin female to emerge.

The moth’s life cycle takes 12 months to be complete, and involves a single generation.

This one got stuck in the cobweb. I am not sure if it is safe for the spider to feast on it. The moth is bright-colored for a good reason: if attacked, it emits a liquid containing cyanide.

Two shots of the hovering Six-spot burnets.

I keep walking, crossing from one side to the other. It is Comeragh mountains in background. We have been there 🙂

In the distance I see a man. Looks like he is foraging in the salt marsh.

Being a curious person, I come up and ask what is that he is collecting. It is Glasswort, he says. It comes out I met Andrew Malcolm – forager, composer and wildlife photographer.

I am chewing a piece of Glasswort, as Andrew suggested I should, trying not to look at a cowcake resting nearby.

Andrew says there are at least nine butterfly species I might come across. I saw only five. This is Small tortoiseshell…

…and this is Meadow brown.

A Bright-line Brown-eye moth caterpillar was hurrying across the rocks with a remarkable speed. More creatures in my next blog post.

The water started to slowly fill up the bay. You can see the oyster farm, the rows of the oyster bags in the distance. The farm is about 1 km away, but I don’t have the slightest interest to inspect it. Lessons learned 🙂

I will share the rest of my walk in my next blog post. Hope you enjoyed An Coinigéar and our walk.

 Have a wonderful week ahead!


  1. Happy you liked a few of my blog posts so I could follow back and view your amazing blog! I read Fox News, and learned so much about the breed, and the incredible Pat who has them as family pets. His good deed looked upon by Wildlife people as dangerous!?!? (shaking my head) Makes no sense. I’m enjoying your photography & look forward to more of your blog posts.

  2. Such a beautiful place! And thanks for sharing the video, it’s wonderful and left me with a sense of wonder and amazement at this little peninsula that really offers a magnificent variety of colours and textures. Do happen to know how the video was made? I imagine a drone would have worked…
    And I’ve never seen this kind of moths before, it’s really beautiful – and cyanide? Woah! 😀 Bet the spider didn’t live long enough to enjoy its meal. 😉
    Looking so much forward to part 2!! Have a lovely Sunday evening, Inese, and a glorious new week ahead! xxxxxxxx

    1. Thank you so much, Sarah! I cannot get in touch with the video author, but I emailed him shortly after the video was published. I think he did a marvelous job.
      Hope your week has a good start! xxxxxx

  3. Beautiful post, and the addition of the video complements the feel and emotion of An Coinigéar you create with your photos ~ an environment it feels as if I could spend my whole life there and it would feel too short. Another uncovered a gem you bring to us ~ wishing you a great start to 2019, Inese, and look forward to more discoveries with you!

    1. Thank you, Randall! I hope it is a year of amazing discoveries for you too.
      I am so glad I found this video – it wasn’t published yet when I wrote the post. An Coinigéar is indeed a place where the time stands still, marked only by the ebb and flow of the tide. I came there at 8 am and left at almost 4 pm. Magic 🙂

    1. Thank you Dave! The spit is a surreal looking place, and I am glad I found this video. Some places look fantastic from above, especially the estuaries with their web of riverbeds.

    1. Thank you so much, Takami! I cannot wait to visit the Cunnigar again. I have some more pictures and will post them in two weeks. Hope you have a great January ❤

  4. At a boweshot of distance a world of blue reflections and little beings. I love the sound of Irish words, each one seems to tale a story. Thank you, Inese ^_^

    1. Thank you for joining the walk, Francis! This strip of land is unique and beautiful. I am glad that it is still there, unspoiled, and will hopefully remain for millennia to come. 🙂

  5. Looks like an area primarily inhabited by all the lovely little creatures! Loved listening to the gentleman’s accent and his warning about the cows!

    1. Thank you! Oh I will write about the cows in my next post. They are not your regular cows at all 🙂 I will also write a few words about the history of this place. It is unique, and thanks goodness, it is not a tourist destination 🙂

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