Kilkenny County Council is one of a number of Local Authorities in Ireland who have adopted the All Ireland Pollinator Plan – a nationwide plan developed by the National Biodiversity Data Centre to help pollinators survive and thrive. As part of our Pollinator Action Plan for 2019 the Heritage Office of Kilkenny County Council funded Pollinator Prizes in the 2019 annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade.
The Kilkenny Filipino Community won the prize for the “Best Community” pollinator themed float and they kindly nominated the Villa Maria gardens at the home of the Sisters of Mercy, Talbots Inch where they love to spend time, as the recipient of their prize. Moneenroe National School won the prize for the “Best School” pollinator themed float.
Each prize was a day’s free work (comprising a garden visit and a report) by Dr. Fiona McGowan, an experienced ecologist and botanist, to provide advice on enhancing an area for pollinators.
You may have heard lots of discussion on media recently about pollinators and the many actions that people are taking to help these valuable creatures which are under threat.
The National Biodiversity Data Centre (NBDC) under the All Ireland Pollinator Plan, and supported by The Golf Course Superintendents Association of Ireland (GCSAI), have developed a new guide “Pollinator Friendly Management of Golf Courses” to provide practical advice on 5 simple low cost actions to make golf courses more pollinator friendly.
According to Damien McLaverty, GM Golf Course Superintendents Association of Ireland “GCSAI are delighted to support the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan and this Guide for Pollinator-friendly Golf Courses. Through this fantastic initiative we hope awareness will be raised and practical actions taken to improve pollinator friendly practices and biodiversity on Irish Golf Courses”
The 5 key actions that Golf Courses can take to support pollinators are:
Manage meadow areas for pollinators
Plant pollinator-friendly trees and bulbs
Make the area around the Clubhouse and Pro-shop pollinator-friendly
Reduce use of herbicides
Provide nesting places for wild bees.
The Heritage Office of Kilkenny County Council has distributed this new guide to all the golf and pitch and putt courses in County Kilkenny. They also have a limited number of free pollinator signs for any golf club which adopts actions from the guidelines and by erecting these signs it shows people that the golf clubs are actively involved in helping our pollinators and to demonstrate that particular areas are being managed for pollinators.
Golf and Pitch and Putt clubs can sign up as supporters of the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan and map any actions they undertake on the ‘Actions for Pollinators’ website. This allows the NBDC to build a bigger picture of what is actually happening to help our biodiversity and pollinators on the golf courses around the island of Ireland.
Kilkenny County Council was the first Local Authority in Ireland to adopt the All Ireland Pollinator Plan, and they are working hard to undertake actions in their own work programmes to help pollinators, and to provide support and advice to other sectors in the county.