Kilkenny Countryside Park is open for visitors

Kilkenny Countryside Park is open for visitors. The former Kilkenny dump has been rehabilitated as the new country Park and is open to visitors. From the city centre cycle access can be via Bleach road, there is also parking available off the bleach road, adjacent to the park entrance at Castlecomer road or alternatively parking at Dunmore church and access the park via the historic mass path.A recycle centre is located adjacent all recycle items can be returned and segregated.

New planting is ongoing and attractive seating and activity centres for both young and old and our doggy friends are provided.There is even a hurling wall protecting the great hurling tradition of Kilkenny.

Hurling wall with two sides

There area also sustainable toilet facilities. the park closes each evening the time varies depending on the time of year. there is extensive new planting.

KKB Submission to the 4th National Biodiversity Action Plan

we set out under KKB Submission to the 4th National Biodiversity Action Plan:-

 

4th National Biodiversity Action Plan

Response to Draft for Public Consultation. Thank you for the opportunity to consult on the above matter. We would be grateful if the following points could be considered for future drafts.

 

Whole of government and whole of society approach

·         Effective communication and buy-in are critical to delivering the national biodiversity strategy. Increasingly, sectors like agriculture, industry and conservation are becoming more siloed and oppositional as policy and financial pressures increase and mutual understanding decreases. In order to deliver a truly ‘whole of government and whole of society approach’ all sectors of government, business and society need to be included in the delivery of the biodiversity strategy. Effective solutions to biodiversity issues can often emerge from within a community, sector or industry when engagement is meaningful and non-confrontational.

 

·         There is potential to introduce pilot projects that bring different communities and sectors together to deliver tangible on-the-ground solutions to specific issues in areas such as agriculture, energy and community development in a collaborative way. These pilot projects could be used to promote, not just the solution, but the collaborative process that delivered change and models conflict resolution strategies.

 

Biodiversity Net Gain

 

·         The Plan should set out objectives that enable each sector to achieve Biodiversity Net Gain on new plans and projects. Mandatory BNG has recently been introduced in England and Wales and adopted voluntarily in other areas and sectors. Good quality baseline information is critical to delivering and monitoring BNG along with adequate resources within the consenting authority to review applications and long-term delivery.

 

·          Planning and Development requiring planning permission should be linked to the achievement of good ecological status in associated water courses prior to planning approval and after completion of projects

 

Communities

·         Community empowerment is one of the most effective means of delivering change and is necessary for societal buy-in. Bottom-up initiatives like the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan have proven successful in harnessing community energy by undertaking  clear evidence-based, targeted actions on a very specific topic. Similar initiatives could be developed through organisations on the ground once they are adequately resourced to develop targeted strategies. This can can help avoid stagnation in the delivery of top-down policy.

 

Education and research

·         It is estimated that there is as much biodiversity below ground as above ground, but soil ecology and biodiversity is often completely overlooked, outside agricultural fertility parameters. Healthy soils are critical to food production, carbon sequestration, medical treatments and a range of other services that are beginning to be recognised. This is a growing area of research in light of both the biodiversity and climate crises and would benefit from acknowledgement and support within the NBAP.

 

·         Further emphases should be given to delivering sustainable education programmes at Junior, TY and Senior cycles to introduce ecological literacy and ensure that children and young adults have a good understanding of biodiversity issues and actions needed to protect it. Increasingly, more of us are living in urban settings and have lost connections to nature and our basic understanding of food production and other ecosystem services. There is potential to develop projects that link schools with the farming community or other individuals and groups that work with nature. While many programmes, such as Green Schools, have achieved excellent results, there is still significant potential to bring nature and sustainability into schools and the curriculum as a whole.

Resourcing and waste management

·         Food production and food waste are critical issue for biodiversity both globally and nationally. Globally we waste one-third of all food produced annually. This equates to approximately 16% of habitable land on the planet. In Ireland, we waste approximately 1 million tonnes of food per annum. By changing this one issue, we could divert the wasted land resources to biodiversity use and reduce GHG emissions from production and decomposition. The Plan clearly acknowledges the devastation impacts climate change will have on biodiversity and the irreversible effects on ecosystems. Targeted programmes to engage communities on the ground to tackle specific issues around food production and waste could be considered for support within the Plan.

 

·         An engaged society, targeted actions and adequate resources are needed to deliver an effective strategy. Funding along with people’s time and energy are all limited resources and should be spent wisely. Ineffective and wasteful spending should be identified within Departments and programmes and re-routed to bodies and programmes that can deliver. Examples of this occur in agricultural schemes where participants are financially incentivised to take actions that have no demonstrated benefits, or in some instances, they have negative effects on biodiversity. These schemes are sometimes developed without the appropriate input from relevant experts and groups that could guide a meaningful programme. In other instances, it can occur where new actions or programmes are trialled but proved ineffective, but continue to be implemented by Departments.

 

Lessons learned

·         Globally and nationally, we have failed to deliver on successive plans and actions to protect biodiversity. Our food, energy and consumption models are broken and need transformative change. Learning is an iterative process and mistakes are part of that process. It’s important that we build in effective review processes, learning from previous successes and failures and change course as required.

 

 

Bioblitz 2023 at Kilkenny Castle Park & Canal walk

Celebration of National Biodiversity week in Kilkenny

The 24 hour Bioblitz aims to bring budding environmentalists together and led by experts and specialists groups to identify and record as many species as possible within the diverse habitats of Kilkenny’s Castle park and the Canal..

 

There will be a small stream citizen science species identification work shop on Friday afternoon on the canal at the whitewashed well . There will also be a tour and identification talks about the very healthy range of flora that grows on the Canal and Castles and also on the rivers habitat flora.

Also on Friday after noon there will be a guided  walk and talk about the Castle parks habitats and trees and they are now being managed in the face of the Biodiversity and Climate Change Crisis.

After Tea there will be the validation of records and the all important species count which will be followed by a Dusk Chorus and much anticipated Bat identification walk at 8.45. Moth trap setting woll also be happening in the background. Due to a large anticipated demand numbers will be restricted and booking will be through eventbrite.

Saturday Morning starts of very early for the Dawn CHORUS which is not to be missed and meet up will be at the Castle gates at 4.30am.

Following Dawn Chorus identification and recording the Moth traps will be collected and brought back to the Medieval Room for identification.

After Breakfast there will be a grass land and wildflower identification walk which will be followed by a Wild Life Safari identifying pollinators and all sorts of species.

The event will Finish up after lunch which is from 1-2pm and will be followed  by lat call for records between 2-3pm when our Bioblitz ends.

It is hoped that we might be vised by local or visiting ecologists and recorders who might drop in and help spot any gaps.

Bioblitz events enable participants to learn about different types of plants, animals and insects in their local environment. This can help to increase awareness of the importance of biodiversity in the local area.

This  bioblitz event will  encourage members of the local community and other community’s to get involved in the management and improvement of their local environment.

It will also help to gather important data on the local environment, which can be used to inform future conservation efforts.

The Bioblitz events will be a fun and educational activity for people of all ages. They can help to promote a sense of community and encourage people to get involved in environmental projects.

This event aimsto support local biodiversity by identifying areas that need special attention or protection. This can help to improve the environment for wildlife and plants in the local area.

for  further information email mail@keepkilkennybeautiful.com

Www.keepkilkennybeautiful.com

24 Hour Bioblitz

Friday & Saturday26th/27 May

Kilkenny Castle Park and The Canal

 

Friday 26th

Castle Park

3.00 pm Launch at Medieval Room

3.30 pm Woodland Walk to River.   

4.00 pm Tree Walk, talk and Identification with Colm Mangan.

The Canal

3.30 – 5.30 pm Small Stream Citizen Science. Kick Sampling and invertebrate identification and other flora and fauna identification and recording.

6.00pm Dinner Break.

 7.30 pm Validation of records

8.45 pm Dusk Chorus and Bat Walk. (Eventbrite)

11.00 pm Close

Saturday 27th

4.30 am Dawn Chorus. 

6.00 am Moth Trap collection and Identification.

7.30 am Moth release and Breakfast.

 9.00am. Record Validation.

9.30am Grassland species identification and recording.

11.30am Wild Life Safari. 

1.00pm Lunch

2.00 pm Last Call for Records.

3.00pm Close and de-brief.

 

Our City rivers are a fantastic resource

What a fantastic  resource we have  through our City with the  River Nore and its wooded banks.  The spread of invasive species including Himalayan balsam and giant hog weed   within the river Nore corridor   through Kilkenny city  has been  been halted  and  our ongoing inspections and  management  has see a major decline in their occurrence. This has allowed the strong  re-establishment of native Irish riverside species of plants and shrubs which help to stablise the river banks.

CBS Green school Committee

The 2021 CBS Green schools committee was introduced to the Kilkenny citizen science small stream macro invertebrate monitoring scheme at the river Breagagh this September. Ann Phelan regional coordinator of LAWPRO, Green schools TY coordinator Peter Mulhall, Pat Boyd chairperson KKB and Tom Turley of KKB.

The Kilkenny cityCitizen science invertebrate monitoring scheme has been undertaken over the last two years with baseline information already in place. It is therefore possible to monitor water quality on an ongoing basis.

Spring in the air

A lot can happen with social distancing restrictions and a 5km limit. In the last few days the grass has started to grow the tree and fruit buds are getting greener and the birds are getting more vocal. The last of the tree slips are getting planted and  the community orchards and fruit planting  is ongoing. The Acorn project is going ahead full steam with the  Kilkenny Forrest School.  Why not join in and help   with Keep Kilkenny Beautiful.

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