This project aims to develop a mechanism that encourages farmers to make their farm more pollinator friendly in a way that is measurable and will not impact on productivity. Farmland has experienced wide-scale loss of wild pollinators over the last fifty years. In Ireland, one third of our 99 bee species are threatened with extinction. To address this issue, the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan (AIPP) was published in 2015. For the AIPP to be successful, it requires small changes to how we manage the entire landscape to ensure it is a place where bees and other insects can survive and thrive. Farmers are at the heart of the solution and it is important that realistic mechanisms are developed encouraging and supporting farmers in protecting farmland pollinators.
Location of the schemeseveral regions
Mid-East Region (Kildare, Wicklow and Laois)
Duration of the schemeSince: 2019
Objective(s) of the scheme / project
This project aims to develop a flexible mechanism that encourages all farmers to make their farm more pollinator friendly in a way that will not negatively impact on productivity. The project aims to: test the effectiveness of a range of pollinator measures across farmland of different types and identify those that are most cost-effective; examine the impact of these pollinator measures on broader biodiversity; develop an innovative farm-scale scoring system to quantify how pollinator-friendly the entire farm is as a land parcel based on the pollinator measures; develop a simple results-based payment method that encourages and assists farmers in attempts to improve their overall farm-scale pollinator score.
Which habitats or species are in the focus of the scheme / project?
Pollinators on farmland are the focus of the project, wider biodiversity and plants will also be assessed.
Which indicators are used?
Abundance and diversity of plants and pollinators (wild bees and hoverflies)
Physical structures (Hedgerows, treess and specific farm features including, cover crop, clover pasture, meadows and mixed species sward)
Other – Pesticide use
The abundance and diversity of plants and pollinators will be used to assess the quality of pollinator friendly farm features and physical structures.
Design of scheme / project
- Pure Result Based Payments
The evaluation includes the following actions: assess all participating farms for existing pollinator habitat and determine an initial baseline farm-scale pollinator score (year 1); fully monitor all participating farms for pollinators and broader biodiversity (year 2); score all participating farms annually and explain to farmers what simple actions they can take to improve their score. Farmers will be paid annually depending on their score and the amount and quality of habitat they create (Years 2-5); full critical review and future recommendations (year 5).
By which fund(s) is the scheme / project implemented?
- Other measures of Rural Development
EIP operational group
Is there a top up in case of reaching the goals?
How many hectares are in the scheme (year 2020)?
- 2.001 – 5.000
How many farmers take part in the scheme?
- Less than 50
How are participating farmers supervised/advised?
- Advisors visits (optional)
- Advice by telephone
- Information documents (pamphlets, reports, etc.)
- Information meetings/workshops (voluntary)
Are there any evaluation results (2020)?
National Biodiversity Data Centre, Carriganore, Co. Waterford