Three Sisters Gathering Peat on Achill Island and the past, present, and future of Irish bogs

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In the summer of 2021, I undertook ethnographic fieldwork for two months in the West of Ireland. I lived and worked at family farms in three rural communities in County Galway and traveled in between these stays to other rural areas and small towns in Galway and Mayo. My research focused on the quotidian experiences of small-scale farmers and families who heat their homes by burning peat that they collect themselves from ancestral or rented plots of bog land. This feature narrates an encounter with one such family on a bog at the beginning of my fieldwork, highlights key issues around the past, present, and future management of Irish bogs, and argues for the need to protect both bog ecosystems and the people who rely upon them.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)74-80
Number of pages6
JournalSentio Journal
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023


  • peatlands
  • Ireland
  • land management
  • turf cutting
  • Ethnography
  • agriculture
  • just transitions

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