Sheep Dip

The Department of Agriculture and the Department of the Environment are to establish a “forum on the management of spent sheep dip”, as recommended by the EPA

Spent sheep dip has been identified by the EPA as having “significant toxic impacts” on river ecosystems in areas where the practice of dipping is widespread.

Donegal had been mentioned in the report as one such area where the disposal of used dip and sheep footbath solutions required improvement.

The EPA had advised that the relevant departments commence discussions by the end of March (2022) on the sheep dip forum

Source: Farmers Journal

Temporal land use patterns and livestock numbers (sheep) across several river catchments

Temporal land use patterns and livestock numbers across several river catchments. Within DAFM the Land Parcel Identification System (LPIS) division generated a list of herds who had land in each river catchment area for a select number of river catchments from 2014-2020. The departments Animal Identification & Movement (AIM) division provided the bovine and ovine figures for each herd in each year.

It should be noted that the AIM data was generated for herds who had land in each river catchment area. It is likely that some herds also had land outside the river catchment areas. In total AIM were supplied with 26,002 herds to report on across each location and year. 2,198 of these herds were not included in the final dataset because they either did not have cattle in the period, or did not have sheep census returns in the period (or both).

https://data.gov.ie/dataset/temporal-land-use-patterns-and-livestock-numbers-sheep-across-several-river-catchments?package_type=dataset

Note:

This dataset is interesting as it is published by Catchment (not County or ED), which makes it useful for water quality purposes. So I asked the Open Data Officer in DAFM why this is the case. Response is as follows:

We received a specific request looking for land use patterns and livestock numbers across several river catchments and how these may have changed over time as part of the Climate Change Mitigation Research Programme | CCMRP | Inland Fisheries Ireland project. As part of the request, we were provided a shapefile by the requester for each river catchment area they required data for. LPIS generated lists of herds who had land in each river catchment area for each year. AIM provided the bovine and ovine figures for each herd in each year.

Freshwater Pearl Mussel Project: Pilot Blanket Bog Restoration Site (Bundorragha)

Pilot blanket bog restoration site in the catchment to see what effects the removal of sheep grazing has on blanket bog. 

Surface of the bog has mostly recovered and revegetated and bare peat areas significantly reduced in extent.

Bare peat areas are liable to erosion during wet weather which can result in peat silt being washed into the river where Freshwater Pearl Mussel occur.

Threat has been significantly reduced from this site thanks to the help from local farmers.

Bundorragha recovery
Bundorragha
Bundorragha used

Sheep Population Map

Ireland’s sheep flock increased, once again, by 2% in 2020 compared to 2019

Figures from the department reveal that 3.88 million sheep were kept in the country at the end of December 2020 – which represents an increase of 69,000 head when compared to the 2019 figure.

The average number of sheep per flock was 109, which was the same as 2019.

Donegal has highest number of sheep (535,949), next is Mayo and Galway, with 440,784 and 422,768 respectively, then Kerry and Wicklow, with 331,403 and 237,522 respectively.