Council’s Environmental Projects
Pollinators require flowering habitats, for example, wildflower meadows, hedgerows, woodlands and agricultural areas.Habitat loss, fragmentation, degradation, decline in wildflowers, pesticides, pests and diseases have resulted in a decline in pollinators, resulting in biodiversity & economic loss. The annual value of pollinators is at least €53 million in the Republic of Ireland and £603 million in the UK.A reduction in natural pollinators will reduce crop yields;reduce quality; reduce consumer choice;and increase the cost of fruits and vegetables that are essential for our diet. Council have developed a Pollinator Plan, linked to the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan, Northern Ireland Biodiversity Strategy & the Derry & Strabane Green Infrastructure Plan 2019-2032, to develop and implement actions on Council owned green spaces for pollinator conservation.
Council will install signage at key greenspaces, to trial a change in grass management in sections of these sites for pollinators. This will involve only cutting and lifting the grass in late summer, to help improve the grassland management for pollinators. This change in grassland management will take place initially on over 3% of our estate (~25 ha). By changing the grass management, this will create grasslands rich in native wild flowers, enhance ecological connectivity, contribute towards biodiversity net gain and increase the natural capital value of these sites.We have been working in partnership with Causeway Coast & Glens Borough Council, in a knowledge learning and exchange programme, through their 'Don't Mow Let it Grow' campaign.
BAY ROAD PARK LOCAL NATURE RESERVE
Bay Road Park is a 20 ha former landfill site, located on the banks of the River Foyle. The Park forms part of the wider cycle and pedestrian greenway network throughout the city. It supports a wide range of habitats to include woodland, grassland, saltmarsh and mudflats. These habitats support a variety of species, with butterflies, moths, bats and significant populations of wading and wintering birds.
Council designated Bay Road Park as a Local Nature Reserve in 2009, to encourage people to connect with nature and benefit from exercise in the natural environment. Members of the local community have formed the Bay Road Park Steering Group, to work in partnership with Council to manage the nature reserve. This protected greenspace provides a sanctuary for over 200,000 visitors & wildlife every year. A natural capital account found that it is ranked within the top five parks in the District, providing a health & wellbeing value of over £3 m / annum to residents.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
Derry City and Strabane District Council’s Biodiversity Officer
Tel: 02871 253253