The list of nineteen wild birds nesting along the roadways as cited by Minister Josepha Madigan’s department last month as the reason for not allowing hedge cutting along roadways in August is absurd. That’s the view of Castlebar based Fianna Fail councillor Al McDonnell.

At this week’s monthly meeting of Castlebar Municipal District, cllr McDonnell said the magpie is among the birds listed and he says it’s simply untrue to say magpies nest along roadways.

The councillor described himself as an experienced observer of the environment and he was adamant that magpies don’t build their nests along roadside hedges.

Rather, he insists magpies build significant nest structures, high up on trees, for maximum observation.

He went further to say that 15 of the wild birds cited by the Minister’s advisors on this issue, do not nest along roadway hedges.

He said if they did, because of the height of such bird homes, the level of road kill of wild life would be significantly higher. He claimed it is a disservice to birds to encourage them to nest in such places.

The problem he said, is that preventing the cutting of roadside hedges and verges this month, is actually putting the lives of road users at risk-with overgrown verges and hedgerows

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