Course Details: 

Protecting Farmland Pollinators and Improving Biodiversity

Original Price:
Start Date and Time:

Tuesday, October 24, 2023

9:30 am
Finish Date and Time (Approx):

Tuesday, October 24, 2023

4:30 pm


1 Day


To Be Confirmed
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Protecting Farmland Pollinators and Improving Biodiversity

Afternoon Cookery Classes begin at 2PM, however please try to be at cookery school for 1:45PM.

Guests will get a copy of all recipes and tastings of all dishes at the end of the demonstration. Please note you will be joining our main student body for this demonstration.

Details of Recipes to be demonstrated are published approximately 2 weeks in Advance.

Presenter: Dr. Una Fitzpatrick (National Biodiversity Data Centre), Dr. Saorla Kavanagh (All Ireland Pollinator Plan) & Donal Sheehan (Bride Project)


Course Intro:

This course will give practical advice on how everyone can improve biodiversity whether they are farmers or non-farmers. It will outline the main drivers in biodiversity loss but also give solutions to halt the decline.

At the end of the course, participants should be able to design an improvement plan for their own holding - whether large or small, farm, garden, school, public area or other.

This full day course is delivered by three subject matter experts with extensive experience of putting research into practice.

Úna has worked as a Senior Ecologist within the National Biodiversity Data Centre since 2007. In 2015, she co-founded the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan with Prof Jane Stout and is the Chair of the Steering Group. She manages the implementation of the Plan and other initiatives within the Data Centre, including the national pollinator databases, the All-Ireland Bumblebee Monitoring Scheme, Flower-Insect Timed Counts, the Rare Plant Monitoring Scheme and the National Vegetation Database.

Saorla is Project Manager of the Protecting Farmland Pollinators project, which seeks to test evidence-based actions to make farmland more pollinator friendly.

Donal is a dairy farmer from Castlelyons in East Cork. He is also the Project Manager of the BRIDE Farming With Nature Project, an innovative agri-environment project that takes a landscape-scale approach to biodiversity whereby groups of farmers in a given area are encouraged to implement a range of habitat improvement measures.

What You’ll Learn:

  • An understanding of the different pollinator groups in Ireland and why it is important to protect them
  • An understanding of the causes and solutions to the biodiversity crisis.
  • An understanding of how to engage with the All Ireland Pollinator Plan and citizen science
  • How to score your farm/land for pollinators using the Protecting Farmland Pollinator Scorecard
  • How to identify different species and know the good biodiversity indicators
  • How to take an innovative community-based approach to environmental management
  • How a results-based payment scheme where farmers have each habitat on their farm assessed and scored, with higher quality habitats gaining higher payments works


Course Elements:

  • Indoor and Outdoor Classroom Learning
  • A walk around our organic farm and gardens using two scoring methods to establish a baseline for our farm pollinators and biodiversity


Good To Know:

  • As we’ll spend time walking and learning around the farm please bring suitable clothing and footwear - and allow for changeable weather!
  • Refreshments and Lunch included; eat alongside other students, cookery school and farm staff and visiting experts
  • The course is held at Ballymaloe Cookery School’s Organic Farm and Gardens in Shanagarry, Co. Cork P25 R274
  • Tea and Coffee with whatever’s fresh out of the oven will be served from 9am so please arrive early to sign in, meet other students and get ready for a busy day of hands on learning


Discounted / Part-Funded Tickets Through NOTS:

Eligible participants living in Ireland can avail of a generous cost reduction on this course through our course partners National Organic Training Skillnet. Go to and sign up through NOTS to avail of their reduced price offering and to get the course for just €100. Once you sign up and pay the reduced rate through NOTS, they will notify us, and you will be all set for the course on October 24rd! Please note – to qualify for the NOTS rate, you must be a) resident in Ireland; and b) employed in any sector (either full-time or part-time).

The prestigious Ballymaloe 12 WeekCertificate Course is run three times a year, with courses beginning in January,April or May, and September.

The course is aimed at anyone with a passionate interest in food. Many of our students use the course as a springboard to become a professional chef; others use it to equip themselves with a marketable skill.

Others still take the course simply to maximize the pleasure they get from cooking at home.

Students develop a deep and detailed understanding of food and how it is produced. The emphasis is on recognising the best ingredients and knowing how to showcase them.

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