Senator Fiona O’Loughlin raises the issue of Deer overpopulation in Kildare and West Wicklow

Kildare based Senator Fiona O’Loughlin today quizzed Minister Malcolm Noonan in the Seanad on the Government plans to tackle the issue of Deer overpopulation.

Senator O’Loughlin said “I have regular engagements with the Kildare IFA, and the issue of deer overpopulation and of TB has been raised with me a number of times.”

“Minister for Agriculture Charlie McConalogue was in Kilcullen mart recently to engage with farmers, and this issue was raised.”

“I was shocked at a recent meeting to be informed that one local farmer lost 25% of his herd to TB because of the overrun of deer in the area. This is people’s livelihoods we are talking about, and something has to be done to protect farmers, their lands, and their livestock’s”

“I am quite concerned that there is no long-term government plan to deal with this issue. There is no doubt that the surge in deer numbers is having an impact on our grasslands and on our crops”

“The implementation of the wildlife control programme by the Dept. of Agriculture is not of the standard required.”

Fiona concluded “We need assurances that the additional funding allocated to wildlife control programme will be fully utilised in providing the staffing and resources required to implement an effective and timely wildlife control programme on the ground”