IRD Duhallow LIFE Project
In 2010, IRD Duhallow was awarded funding from the EU LIFE + programme pointing the way towards the conservation of Freshwater Pearl Mussel, Atlantic Salmon, Otter, Kingfisher and Dipper on the River Allow, a tributary of the River Blackwater SAC. These species are integral to the river and require high quality river water status to survive. In recent times the conservation status of the site has become increasingly under pressure leading to increased nutrient enrichment, channel degradation and siltation caused by years of decline of riparian areas of the river. The main purpose of the project will be to bring about a sustained enhancement of the river bed and the riparian zone. To achieve this, it is essential that all stakeholders in the river work together, highlighting the importance of the river to all parties and the role that they will play in its future conservation.
Restoration works are proposed to be conducted on the Allow River, which flows through Freemount and Kanturk before joining the main Blackwater Channel outside Banteer. Proposed works will include halting bank erosion, introducing alternative forms of cattle drink sources for livestock along the river and control of river weed while ensuring that the needs of all landowners along the river are satisfied. These works should result in the improvement of the water quality of the river, thus maintaining it at a high standard.
An integral part of the project will be engaging local communities and creating awareness of the river and its habitats. Education will be a major focus of the project where local schools both at primary and secondary level will be invited to participate in the project and learn about all aspects of river life.
More information on IRD Duhallow Life is available at http://www.duhallowlife.com