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Regulations Regarding the Cutting of Hedge-Rows?

July 20, 2017

Derrymore Agri Services Limited

The Hedge Cutting Season is from September 1 until February 28 (except in certain, legally defined circumstances). Any works involving the disturbance of hedgerows outside this period may only be carried out for reasons of public health and safety. The "closed season" on hedge cutting is required under Section 46 of the Wildlife (Amendment) Act 2000. Hedges should be cut while they are dormant. Landowners should plan for the management of hedges on their properties since hedges are important heritage features. In addition to helping form the local and regional character of landscapes, hedges and other wild vegetation provide food and shelter for insects, birds and other animals. Almost two-thirds of Ireland's bird species nest in hedges. Hedges also provide natural corridors that permit wildlife to move between habitats.

The "closed season" on cutting hedges is not a new idea. Irish governments have always recognised the conservation importance of hedgerows and other vegetation for breeding birds and other animals and plants. In adopting the Wildlife (Amendment) Act 2000, the Irish government recognised the need for a longer undisturbed period for hedges. Long-term studies show that bird breeding, the first appearance of leaves and the flowering of plants began earlier than first anticipated. The 2000 Act brought the last day for hedge cutting forward to the last day of February in the interests of wildlife and habitat protection. It is important to recognise the importance of maintaining hedgerows as part of wise conservation of our natural heritage, good farming practice and protecting the natural and picturesque beauty.

Here at Derrymore Agri Services Limited we wish to bring the dates for the hedge-cutting season to the attention of the public and hope that this advice will help people to stay on the right side of our wildlife protection laws. More information on Irish Laws in relation to Wildlife can be consulted at: www.irishstatutebook.ie or view the Wildlife (Amendment) Act 2000 here

Extract from Section 46, Wildlife (Amendment) Act 2000:
"(1) (a) It shall be an offence for a person to cut, grub, burn or otherwise destroy, during the period beginning on the 1st day of March and ending on the 31st day of August in any year, any vegetation growing on any land not then cultivated.
(b) It shall be an offence for a person to cut, grub, burn or otherwise destroy any vegetation growing in any hedge or ditch during the period mentioned in paragraph (a) of this subsection."

Our Hedge-Cutting Service is carried out with a McConnell PA93E Hedge-cutter.

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