lough boora parklands The parklands
Bord na Móna
The parklands

Wetlands at the parklands Lough Boora Parklands are a beautiful landscape at the centre of Ireland - a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Through a creative combination of nature and the human hand new habitats are emerging on the cutaway bogs of Co. Offaly. Lands cloaked with great raised bogs for 10,000 years are at the dawn of a new era. Bogs harvested by Bord na Móna for energy since the 1940s are establishing as unique and welcoming habitats for a wide range of flora and fauna.

The parklands consist of a magnificant collection of natural & manmade lakes, wetlands, woodland areas, 50km of walkways, natural recolonisation and pastureland whilst providing a new habitat for wildlife,  flora & fauna.

 
Lough Boora Parklands Project History

Lough Boora Parklands is the pilot project for what will be 80,000 hectares of Ireland’s cutaway bogland – an area spanning 11 counties and three provinces. The parklands project is both interesting and exciting, its significance far exceeding the 2,000 hectare site itself.

Bord na Móna bogs since the 1940s

During the 1940s and 50s Bord na Móna - the Irish Peat Board, was set up to "develop Ireland's peat resources". Since its establishment it has purchased thousands of hectares of peatland and now owns approximately 7% or 80,000 hectares of Ireland’s lowland bogs. Once considered an economic wasteland these bogs have been turned into a commercial enterprise; peat is milled for energy production, harvested for horticultural products and commercial fuel production.

Cutaway bogs in recent years

Bird Hide View of Lough Boora Parklands Over recent years large tracts of bog have been cutaway - "cutaway " being the term used to describe an area that has come out of production once all commercial peat has been removed. The Boora bog complex in Co. Offaly is one of the oldest areas of commercial production and as a result was the first area in which large tracts of cutaway emerged. But what was to be done with these vast expanses of land? This is the question that has faced Bord na Móna since the 1970s and although forestry and agriculture have been developed on suitable land, large tracts remained unsuitable for these enterprises.

In the meantime mother nature took hold in these areas reminding us just what she had to offer. Fortunately her lessons did not fall upon deaf ears and in 1994 a group of local Bord na Móna workers formed the Lough Boora Parklands Group who produced an integrated land use plan for the Boora cutaways. The key elements of the plan embraced environmental and socio-economic concerns and hence the Lough Boora Parklands were born.

 


 

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Did you know

Lough Boora was once on the shore of a great lake which existed after the last Ice Age


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