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HomeFarming News€3,000 fine for livestock company over uncultivated land project
Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnane hails from a sixth-generation drystock and specialised pedigree suckler enterprise in Co. Mayo. She currently holds the positions of editor and general manager at That's Farming, having joined the firm during its start-up phase in 2015.
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€3,000 fine for livestock company over uncultivated land project

Livestock company in court

A judge has ordered a livestock company to pay £2,500 for one offence under the Environmental Impact Assessment (Agriculture) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2007.

McCloskey Livestock Ltd, of Teeavan Road, Dungiven, appeared before Limavady Magistrates Court on Wednesday, September 15th, 2021.

The case initially arose from a routine monitoring inspection visit by the Northern Ireland Environment Agency (NIEA).

The court heard that during 2019 and 2020, McCloskey Livestock Ltd conducted an uncultivated land project without a screening decision or consent from the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs.

Persons undertaking such projects must seek permission from the DAERA to ensure that environmental impacts can be considered. The department then assesses and determines whether a party’s project may proceed.

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Uncultivated land projects include works to improve the agricultural productivity of lands that DAERA defines as ‘uncultivated lands’ or semi-natural areas.

McCloskey Livestock, Nothern Ireland, carried out the unpermitted works in the townlands of Monehanegan and Clonmakane at Loughermore.

The business ploughed and re-seeded semi-natural areas of Priority Habitat ‘Pealtand’ and semi-natural grassland to convert them into improved pasture.

It also removed linear features from the landscape, including townland boundaries.


The DAERA believes the works have had “significant adverse impacts on the environment”.

The works caused damage and destruction to semi-natural areas that are “important for biodiversity”.

“The damage to large areas of peatland will result in the loss of a significant carbon-capture sink, i.e. a loss of natural capital.”

€6,000 fine for man who destroyed hedgerow vegetation and trees

Meanwhile, a judge has ordered a man, who destroyed hedgerow vegetation and trees, containing birds’ nests with eggs, to pay €6,000.

Mr Brian O Reilly, Clonagh, Hollywood, County Laois, pleaded guilty to five offences under the Wildlife Acts at Carlow District Court on Thursday, September 2nd.

The offences took place on lands at Ballickmoyler, Co. Laois between May 8th and 11th, 2020.

  • Two of the summonses related to the destruction of fifty-four mature hardwood trees and twelve hundred meters of hedgerow vegetation;
  • Two more summonses for the wilful destruction of the nests and the eggs of protected wild birds;
  • One summons for procuring and paying others to take part in these offences.

The National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) of the Department of Housing, Local Government, and Heritage took the case. Full article.

Read more court news.

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