Hedgerows Ireland have been working hard to get proper payments in the new CAP schemes for good hedgerow management. Now we're turning our attention to better protection for these linear woodlands which are so vital in so many ways. Please sign the petition-- and share!
Please help us change Ireland's legislation around hedgerow destruction which is completely ineffective and allows up to a massive 500 metres of hedgerow to be removed from a farm without any environmental assessment. Here’s an example of why this is so important....
The 120 acre farm pictured is in County Tipperary and is for sale at the moment. The fields are bounded by 200 year old hedgerows and trees which are a rich habitat for songbirds, small mammals and a huge number of insects and pollinators including wild bee species currently threatened with extinction. The hedges are home to wrens, robins, yellowhammers, thrushes, hedgehogs, badgers, bats and owls—the list is almost endless.
But sadly many recent farm sales in this area, and throughout the country, have been followed by the new owners removing the internal hedges, ditches and trees ultimately creating fields of up to 50 or even 100 acres in some cases. This is to facilitate an industrial style of farming. Yet the fields on this and similar farms are already big by Irish standards, 20 acres and larger.
The loss of countless kilometres of hedgerows is pushing many of our threatened species to extinction. This wholesale removal makes no sense given the many benefits of these ‘linear woodlands’. They capture and store massive amounts of carbon, they retain flood water and filter out nutrients and pollutants, they provide shade, shelter and beauty. Replacement hedges which are supposed to be planted after removal will take at least 30 to 50 years to provide the same benefits.
We think that hedgerow destruction goes against everything our world leaders discussed at COP 26 in Glasgow.
The farm you see in these pictures, and others like it all around the country, may soon be one big field—a windswept prairie—so please add your voice to stop this and other unnecessary hedgerow removal around Ireland.
Hedgerows Ireland will use the results of this petition to lobby politicians to change the current regulations which currently allow up to 500 metres of hedgerow to be removed on a farm without environmental assessment. (The limit is 20 metres in the UK for comparison).
Thank you for your support. Please share. Please also use the comments box to tell us about hedgerow removal incidents in your area.