Newsflash! Extinct species discovered tonight in Terryland Forest Park!
Even more exciting was the fact that it was a breeding pair!
The species popularly referred to by its masculine name of 'Snowman' (Irish = 'Fear Sneachta' and its science name of 'Vir Nivis') was once common across the country during the winter months. Like certain species of birds such as the Barnacle Geese, the Whooper Swan, the Jack Snipe and the much rarer Bewick Swan, the Snowman or Snow People use to migrate annually from the different parts of the northern climes of Europe, Iceland, Greenland and Canada to spend winters in Ireland.
Snowmen used to be mostly found during the December to January period living in parks and home gardens. It was thought that this was due to people especially children feeding them with domestic foodstuffs and almost adopting them as outdoor pets. They had a particular fondness for carrots and apples. In fact the male of the species discovered tonight in Terryland actually had a carrot (see photo).
Reports are also coming in tonight of other Snow People been sighted all across the country. Scientists feel that they re-appeared in Ireland this evening for the first time in many years carried in by the unusually strong cold winds blowing in from Scandinavia. Which is interesting as in Irish folklore tales these snow people are often associated with mythological creatures from Lapland known as 'elves' whose great leader was portrayed as friendly and generous in spirit who, dressed in red and white, used to travel across the night skies in a sleigh pulled by reindeers. Or so the legend goes.
Unfortunately warming temperatures due to rising carbon levels in the atmosphere resulting from the burning of fossil fuels and deforestation made the climate of Ireland unsuitable to these gentle snow people. Their numbers started to dramatically decline from the 1980s onwards. Within a decade there were quite rare only seen in very small numbers. It was noticed by then that their bodies had become quite emaciated and they only spent a few days living in Ireland. The last sighting in the country was during a very short period in early 2018.