MEN are leaving the country in much greater numbers than women, a startling new report reveals.
More than 40,000 men emigrated last year, compared to fewer than 25,000 women, the figures from the Central Statistics Office show.
This latest gap between the sexes has only opened up in the last few years, as 10 years ago emigration was evenly split between male and female.
However, since 2006 this gender gap has been widening rapidly -- and it's particularly pronounced for those aged 25 to 44 where male emigrants outnumber women two to one.
Immigration to Ireland remains evenly split between the sexes at 15,000 each.
The Women and Men in Ireland 2010 report reveals this is far from the only area where the sexes differ; being male or female plays an enormous role in determining where you work, what you earn, what makes you sick and how long you live.
Men are hugely overrepresented at both the top and bottom of society -- more likely to be in a top decision-making job, but also far likelier to end up in prison or as a murder victim.
Women live nearly five years longer and are better qualified than men but still earn less. They earn around 70pc of men's income -- and even adjusting for men working much longer hours, women's hourly earnings are still only 90pc of men's.
Females now dominate the professions -- accounting for 51pc of workers in this category which includes doctors, lawyers and teachers -- but they are still massively underrepresented in high-paying managerial and decision-making posts.
For example, only a third of hospital consultants are women and fewer than one in five secretary generals of government departments is a woman, even though women account for 65pc of civil service employees.
Ireland is also near the bottom of the EU league table when it comes to electing female politicians -- less than 14pc of the last Dail, way below the EU average of 24pc.
Irish women are the most fertile in Europe, having 2.1 babies on average, even though they wait longer to become mothers with 29 the average age to have a first child. Married women wait till they're 31.
And although boys significantly outnumber girls, the fact that women live longer means that they hugely outnumber men late in life, particularly in their 80s and beyond.
The unemployment rate for men has more than trebled to 16.7pc in the last few years, while for women it's doubled to 9.8pc, with 863,000 women working (56.4pc) compared to 996,000 (64.5pc) men.
And on the home front the gap between the sexes remain enormous, with just 7,500 men on home duty compared to a huge half a million women.
Although they live longer than men, women are just as likely to die of heart disease, but less likely to die of cancer, while men are twice as likely to be in a fatal accident and four times more likely to die from suicide. Men are much more likely to be treated for alcoholism and schizophrenia, but women are more likely to be hospitalised for depression and eating disorders.
Poverty is one of the few areas where men and women are equal, with 14pc of both sexes deemed to be at risk of it.