Goatherder wanted for Ireland’s new conservation project


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Yodeling is not necessary for Ireland’s new conservation job, although handling a sheepdog can be helpful.

Fingal County Council, as part of a revolutionary pasture conservation project with the Old Irish Goat Society (OIGS), is looking for a goatherd.

The position will be to herd 25 goats on the Howth Hills to guard gorse, heather and other flammable products.

It will also test, for the first time in Ireland, the Norwegian “no-fence” system which uses GPS tracking.

The goats will be brought from the national herd of Old Irish Goats, a rare native breed, to Mayo.

Sean Carolan, OIGS, said: “We are looking for someone with experience in sheep or goat farming. The Shepherd will manage the Howth goat herd, move the goats daily from site to site and take care of the breeding program. “

Howth, part of the Unesco Dublin Bay Biosphere Reserve, has been plagued by forest fires since the goat kidnapping 100 years ago.

The Old Irish Goat is well adapted to the harsh conditions of the Irish highlands and can provide a natural means of vegetation control. The project seeks to restore their role as traditional grazing by reestablishing the native breed in the moors above the city of Dublin.

Until the 1940s, Howth Head was traditionally grazed by cattle and goats in particular. With the decline of traditional grazing, forest fires have become more frequent, gorse and ferns have spread, and the diversity and quality of heathland has declined.

The goatherd will work closely with Fingal’s biodiversity manager, Hans Visser.

“By re-establishing grazing with goats, we intend to restore the moor and reduce the risk of forest fires on Howth. We are now looking for an experienced breeder to start this project, ”said Mr. Visser.

The ability to work outdoors in all seasons and raise goats with sheepdogs, as well as maintain enclosures, is part of the job description. Knowledge of Microsoft Office and the use of cameras is desirable.

The position, which can be found on greenjobs.ie, pays € 45,000 and is reposted here and in the UK with the aim of finding the right candidate.

Meanwhile, the fires that ravaged thousands of acres deep in Killarney National Park and the Unesco Biosphere Reserve two weekends ago have deprived herds of old Irish wild goats of their ranges. traditional food.

Wild goats live deep inside and are now spotted in areas never before seen.

Wildlife rangers say Killarney’s goats are mostly of the very old breed. The young are born in February and are agile very quickly so they would not have been caught in the fire on the last weekend of April.

However, their foraging grounds have disappeared and they are now searching for food elsewhere in the park.

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