This week on UCD Birdwatch, we’re covering some breaking news on the return of the infamous UCD Water Rail, a welcome return to our campus’s stunning bird community (birds of flight, definitely not ladies). There were many beautiful birds in UCD last year, and the inclusion of the Water Rail only serves to reinforce this. 

The Turbine has received numerous reports of ecstatic students spotting Water Rails in the lake beside the Engineering Building. These elusive birds are known to visit the campus in the colder winter months. Asides from livening up the southside of the UCD campus (which is much needed amid the drab and dreary Commerce and Law students), these birds are a testament that temperatures are not increasing in Ireland, contrary to what many environmentalists claim. Here is clear proof that climate change is all but an illusion. If temperatures were truly rising, as conspiracy theorists claim, the Water Rail would not be found in UCD. 

water rail

Students not familiar with these secretive water foul may wonder what the big deal is; there are signs for Water Rails dotted along the UCD lakes, after all. These are misleading, as they refer to the metal safety rails to help people get out of the lakes after inadvertently falling in after one too many Dragon Soops. The Water Rail birds have no such signs dedicated to them, likely due to the lack of university funding. 

January is always a fascinating month for UCD Birdwatch, and the Water Rails’ return to the UCD campus is certainly the highlight! Will February match the high expectations set in the first month of the year? Keep your eye out on this column to stay up to date with the UCD bird community. 


Andrew Beaks – Turbine Reporter