28 Sept 2022

Three Waterford projects receive biodiversity funding boost

Three Waterford projects receive biodiversity funding boost

Birdwatching at Dungarvan. Photo: Birdwatch Ireland

Three projects in Waterford are to benefit from funding through the Local Biodiversity Action Fund (LBAF), it has been confirmed. 

The first project to received €5,100 in funding is a geese project in Dungarvan.

Following attachment of gps tags to Brent Geese in Dungarvan in January 2022, those involved would like to develop a follow on project with the local primary and secondary schools involving talks by the Irish Brent Research Group and demonstration of interrogation of the mobile gps data.

The funding provided will be used to cover costs of school visits, preparation of educational materials including videos, supply of materials for nesting boxes and lures, installation costs of boxes and costs of pilot site survey.

The second project to received €5,950 in funding focuses on biodiversity awareness. 

It involves the design and installation of 2 wildlife interpretation signs at Colligan Estuary in Dungarvan and the boating lake in Tramore. 

A third project which will receive funding of €3,000 involves conservation of freshwater pearl mussels. 

In 2019 WCC in collaboration with LAWPRO, IFI and NPWS established an assisted breeding programme for Freshwater Pearl Mussel, the scientific research element of the project includes environmental DNA testing of river water.

Water samples throughout the River Clodiagh catchment and at the Kilmeaden hatchery will be tested for FPM DNA.  The aim is to see if the presence of Freshwater Pearl Mussels can be detected using this method.  

Malcolm Noonan T.D., Minister of State for Heritage and Electoral Reform, previously announced over €1.4 million in funding for Local Authorities to carry out biodiversity projects through fund. 

Since it was launched in 2018, a total of almost €4m has been granted to local authorities through the LBAF to carry out projects in support of the National Biodiversity Action Plan 2017-2021 (NBAP).

“We know that communities are at the heart of biodiversity action and that’s why I’m so thrilled to see this fund continue to grow and increase its impact all across the country,” said Minister Noonan.

“This year, we’ve funded 128 projects across all 31 Local Authorities – this will have real, tangible impact for nature and it couldn’t come at a more crucial time. What’s more, the successful projects are all contributing to the implementation of the National Biodiversity Action Plan (NBAP) and helping to advance our shared vision for nature. The new NBAP is currently out for public consultation, so it’s a great opportunity for people to have their say and help shape the future for biodiversity in Ireland.”

Engagement with communities and local authorities is crucial to the implementation of the National Biodiversity Action Plan. The LBAF scheme represents a commitment to support implementation of the Plan at community, county and regional level, and recognises the importance of the work carried out by local authorities through their biodiversity and heritage officers.

All 31 local authorities applied for and will receive funding this year, with a total of 128 projects approved, covering a range of biodiversity related activities, including invasive alien species control, dune restoration, wetland surveys and biodiversity awareness and training.

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