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Ring of Gullion Biodiversity

The area today has a rich flora and fauna with many nationally and internationally important habitats and species.

Biodiversity in RoG

The Den Zone

The hawthorn hedge around this area has been laid. This old technique means that the individual trees are cut nearly all the way through until there is just a small piece of bark and wood attaching the tree to its roots. The tree can then be bent over and laid nearly flat making a dense, animal proof hedge that is great for wildlife. The lower hedge also lets you see the view while you are sitting at the picnic table or hiding inside the wicker deer teepee. Why not use some of the sticks and branches around here to make your own den?

All the suggested activity sheets below come from the Woodland Trust Nature Detectives website where you can find hundreds of ideas for exploring your local woodland.

Den Building

Follow our top tips and create a wonderful woodland hideaway.

  • Use branches, leaves and twigs to build a sturdy, cosy den
  • Remember that you need a good foundation before you start
  • Can you build a den big enough for you and your friends?

Remember, never cut anything down or damage the wood to construct your den.

Activity sheet

Mini Den Building

Build a den for your toys so they can join in the fun!

Get creative with sticks, leaves and other natural bits and bobs, and make a mini woodland hideaway.

  • Make sure you build your den in a sheltered spot, so it’s away from the wind
  • Will your den be tall or small? Which sticks are best for the walls?
  • Experiment with grass and fallen leaves – which makes the comfiest floor?

Little brothers and sisters will love helping you with this activity, so try making enough dens for everyone.

Activity Sheet

Giant Nest Building

Collect sticks and make a nest big enough to sit in.

Can you create a cosy, comfy nest? Create somewhere for you and your friends to sit in.

  • Choose sticks in lots of different shapes and sizes
  • Don’t forget to add soft dead grass and feathers to sit on!
  • Do you think any birds would be impressed with your nest?

Activity Sheet

Woodland Sprites

Make your own Green Man or woodland sprite.

The woods are said to be home to nature sprites, elves and fairies. Create your own using leaves, mud and other natural items.

  • Choose a spot for your sculpture – a tree trunk, large rock or the forest floor is best
  • Gather fallen ferns, pine cones, twigs and leaves and make a face
  • If there’s a big group of you, try making a life-sized figure

Leave your sculpture behind for other people to find. Maybe they’ll be inspired to make their own sprite too!

Activity Sheet

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NIEA DoE N&M DC Biodiversity

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Ring of Gullion AONB
Crossmaglen Community Centre,
O’Fiaich Square,
BT35 9AA.

Tel: +44 (0)330 137 4898


Visitor Servicing and Attractions: 0330 137 4046

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