Wildlife and cutting hedgerows
Sir, – We really enjoy your coverage of Ireland’s natural heritage in The Irish Times. It is something to look forward to in a country that needs to learn to appreciate what wonderful native wildlife lives in our gardens, farms, hillsides, seashores, canals, bogs, lakes, rivers, forests and countryside
Sadly the majority of our politicians fail to recognise very little of this. One only has to look at the Heritage Bill which is before the Dáil at present. This proposes to allow the legal burning of uplands until the end of March and the cutting of hedgerows from the beginning of August rather than September 1st. Our bees, birds, mammals and insects are dependent on the rich harvest of flowers and fruits available on our hedgerows during this crucial month, leading into a long, cold and wet autumn and winter
The existing law which is not being fully observed bans burning in March and hedgerow cutting until September 1st, except where road safety is an issue.
However, Minister for Culture and Heritage Josepha Madigan saw fit to meet a group of turf-cutters in recent days but refused to meet Birdwatch Ireland to discuss the said Heritage Bill. Typical of this Government. – Yours, etc,