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Nenagh District Court

Man convicted and fined for chopping down hedges during bird nesting season

The case was taken by the National Parks and Wildlife Service.

A MAN CHARGED with the destruction of vegetation growing in a hedge during the bird nesting season was convicted at Nenagh District Court earlier this month. 

Judge McGrath convicted and fined the man €1,000 for an offence under Section 40 of the Wildlife Acts.

The offence involved the destruction of vegetation growing in a hedge on 21 May 2018 during the bird nesting season at Lisbunny, Nenagh, Co Tipperary.

The case was taken by the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) which is under the remit of the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht.

Evidence presented by Dr Aine Lynch of the NPWS showed that just under 1.5 kilometres of hedgerow vegetation had been severely cut back with a further 137m completely removed during the bird nesting season, which occurs between  1 March and 31 August.

Lynch, a conservation ranger, explained to the court that the incident occurred at the height of the bird breeding season and that any eggs or feeding chicks in the hedge would have been destroyed or exposed.

The man argued that he had removed the hedgerow before the nesting season started, however, photographs presented to the court showed freshly disturbed ground with the removed trees and shrubs in leaf or blossom.

The judge stated that the evidence given by Lynch was compelling and that, from the photographs showing vegetation clearly in leaf, the works could not have been carried out in February and that the State had clearly proven its case.

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