Ag Cur le AranLIFE: Comhdháil AranLIFE - AranLIFE Conference
April 27, 2018
A Farm Plan Visit on Inis Mór
November 4, 2014
Stephen Hernon and his cattle during a farm plan visit on Inis Mór. The cattle are grazing limestone pavement / orchid-rich grassland mosaic habitat - one of the priority Annex I habitats that are targeted by the AranLIFE project.
Action A.2: Stakeholder consultation and site selection.
Reasons why this action is necessary:
One of the main challenges around the designation of Natura 2000 sites on the islands, and across Ireland as a whole, concerns the level and type of communications and stakeholder consultation prior to the designation. The importance of increased dialogue with the farming community in the development of nature conservation and agricultural policies was highlighted in the high nature value farming case study commissioned by the Heritage Council. Contributing to this challenge, there are a wide range of organisations with various responsibilities for local governance on the islands. If this project is to be successful, it is essential that the island communities are actively involved in its development and implementation. As the islands are a very strong Gaeltacht area, it is important to operate and conduct activities in Irish to ensure the full participation of the community. One of the project’s objectives is to develop and demonstrate the best management practices to both maintain, and bring sites to, favourable condition by addressing the threats of land abandonment, undergrazing, intensification, loss of traditional management systems and associated loss of knowledge. To achieve this, it is necessary for the project to select a range of farms that are indicative of the targeted habitats and can be utilised fully to demonstrate the conservation actions. This action will develop the criteria required for the farm/farmer selection and the selection of suitable farms in an open, transparent and fair manner.