IFA eyes more funding for Burren Life reincarnation
More than 100 farmers have been accepted for the new environmental scheme which is to take over from the Burren Life Project.
However, with more than 200 farmer applicants likely to miss out on the scheme, the IFA has called for increased funding for the project.
The Burren Farming for Conservation Programme (BFCP) was given the green light in May, with €3m being allocated for the project up to the end of 2012.
The scheme is being jointly funded through the Department of Agriculture and the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) and aims to build on the success of the Burren Life Project which finished last year.
Like its predecessor, the BFCP aims to protect the unique landscape of the Burren by encouraging farmers to return to traditional farming methods.
A central plank of the scheme is the out-wintering of stock on the limestone escarpments of the 'high Burren'. This has been shown to help control hazel scrub encroachment and help conserve biodiversity.
Up to 338 farmers applied to join the BFCP but just 120 are likely to be accepted.
Programme director Dr Brendan Dunford said this was unfortunate but was due to the limited funding available.