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Buncrana ‘Tidy Towns’ is buzzing again 26.09.18

FOR the second year in a row, Buncrana Tidy Towns has won the ‘Tidy Towns’ Local Authority Pollinator Award for the North West & West Region for its pollinator project.
Joseph Gallagher, County Donegal Heritage Officer, explains “The focus of the award is on biodiversity and the crucial role that the declining population of Irish bees play in the pollination of our plants, trees and vegetables. The award encourages local groups to implement pollinator-friendly actions in their towns and villages. Among the measures implemented by Buncrana Tidy Towns were mapping of biodiversity areas, selective mowing (including only mowing one-metre deep along roadsides and hedgerows), the planting of pollinator-friendly plants, the erection of signage highlighting areas managed for biodiversity and the delivery of public talks on wildlife.”
George McDermott & Colm Grant highlight some measures being implemented in Buncrana as part of the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan.
“One-third of our 99 bee species are threatened with extinction from Ireland” said Juanita Browne, Project Officer with the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan. "This is because we have drastically reduced the amount of food (wildflowers) and safe nesting sites in our landscapes. The All-Ireland Pollinator Plan was launched in 2015 as a shared plan of action to try to reverse these declines and work with communities, businesses, parks, schools and farms to make an Ireland where pollinators can survive and thrive.”
There was a great response again this year with 67 applications nationwide from 22 counties.  The standard of the applications was very high. Like the other regional award winners, Buncrana Tidy Towns will collect a €1,000 prize. The ‘Tidy Towns’ regional awards ceremonies will take place in October and November.
“It’s all about encouraging wildlife,” said George McDermott, the Buncrana town gardener. He assesses the local bee population by walking a two-kilometre transect regularly and counting the bee species he observes there.
For more information, visit www.tidytowns.ie . To find out how you can take actions to help pollinators or to enter the 2019 Pollinator Award, visit www.pollinators.ie .
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