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Geography, Weather, & Wildlife of Ireland

Geography

Irish Geography - Cliffs of Moher
Cliffs of Moher

The country of Ireland comprises most of the island of Ireland. Only the northern part of the island is governed by the United Kingdom, which is Ireland's only land border. The island sits just west of Great Britain and is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean (west) and the narrow Irish Sea (east).

Geographically, Ireland is very hilly as the lush country has numerous rivers running through it. Although these hills rise up to higher elevations at points (particularly along the southeast coast), nearly the entire country is accessible and very livable.

Weather

Irish Geography - Dingle Peninsula
Dingle Peninsula

Ireland has a fairly temperate climate due to its location on the Atlantic Ocean. Also, due to the country's relatively flat landscape, the country has similar temperatures and weather throughout the island.

Winters only fall to about 36˚ F (2˚ C) in Dublin for overnight lows, while days get about 10˚ F (6˚ C) warmer. Summers aren't much better as Dublin generally only reaches daily highs of about 66˚ F (19˚ C). Fortunately, summers usually have clearer skies so temperatures feel warmer. Despite this, the country receives a fair amount of rain throughout the year and it can arrive during any season. This is particularly true along the east coast; the west coast gets more rain than the east, but the majority of it falls during the winter months. Due to the country's rolling landscapes, fog can also come in quickly and this will make the temperature feel much cooler.

Wildlife

Irish Geography - Sheep on a cliff
Sheep on a cliff

Ireland is home to many birds and fish, but few other animals. There are some mammals, such as mice and rabbits, but few others, while fish abound in the lakes, rivers, and seas.

Birds migrate from both north and south to Ireland along the Atlantic Ocean, making the island nation home to hundreds of birds throughout the course of a year. There are almost no amphibians or reptiles, as no snakes live on the island and only one species of lizard exists.

This page was last updated: March, 2013