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Hedge cutting ban now lifted for six months
Thrush Pic: Anna Karp on Unsplash

05 Sep 2022 / environment Print

Hedge cutting ban now lifted for six months

The ban on cutting or burning hedges between 1 March and 31 August under the 1976 Wildlife Act is now lifted, given that we are now in September.

“Furthermore, 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 the above dates.”

While hedge-cutting and vegetation clearance is restricted to the six-month period from September to February, the legislation allows both landowners and public authorities to cut back hedges for road-safety reasons.

Native woodland

With Ireland’s relatively low coverage of native woodland, hedges are of exceptional importance in providing food, shelter, habitats and corridors for maintaining wildlife diversity, particularly for birds, but also for other fauna and for wild plants.

Untrimmed, thorned hedgerows contain shrubs such as blackthorn, whitethorn, holly, briars and brambles, which are favoured by birds, give food, shelter, nesting places and protection from predators during breeding season.

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