Zoning plan reversed to protect bats
Housing Minister Jan O'Sullivan has reversed a council's housing zoning decision due to concerns about its impact on a roost of 89 rare bats.
At a June meeting, members of Clare County Council defied legal advice and county manager Tom Coughlan by allowing an area be zoned for housing near an internationally important site for the lesser horseshoe bat.
Ms O'Sullivan reversed the zoning decision to protect the bats, which are in a cave near the site outside Quin village.
The site has been zoned as open space due to its location near Poulnagordon Cave Special Area of Conservation.
The bat is one of the world's smallest, weighing less than 9g, and is protected under the EU Habitats Directive.