Heritage of Clare
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Natural Heritage:

Clare Biodiversity:
- the Natural Heritage of Clare

Invasive Alien Species




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The combination of wild places, breathtaking scenery and beautiful wildlife makes county Clare a unique place. The Burren in North Clare with its unmistakable limestone pavement landscape and grassland habitats is home to many rare and unusual plants, to the marine and coastal splendour of Loop Head and the Atlantic Ocean, to the numerous lakes and woodland areas and the remarkable Shannon Estuary.

Biodiversity gives Clare its character and charm. It adds colour and sounds to our towns and villages, and is the life-force of our rural landscape. It is at the core of the affinity which Clare people have for their county and the essence which attracts tourists to Clare.

A wide range of economic and social benefits and services result from the protection of environmental quality and biodiversity, for example biodiversity forms the basis of our landscapes, provides for food and clean water supplies, opportunities for waste disposal, nutrient recycling, coastal protection, flood storage and regulation, among others. Furthermore inappropriate planning can lead to the need for costly engineering solutions to environmental problems.

County Clare has numerous protected sites, many of which are considered to be of both national and international importance. As of 2012, there are 46 Natura 2000 sites in the County, that is 37 Special Areas of Conservation (SACs) and 9 Special Protection Areas (SPAs). There are 14 Natural Heritage Areas which are designated to protect areas of relatively intact bog and 61 proposed Natural Heritage Areas. In addition there is the Burren National Park, 5 Wildlife Santuaries and 4 nature Reserves at Chaer (Murphy) woodland, Ballyteigue, Dromore Woodland and Keelhilla (Slieve Carron)

The protection of the Natural Heritage is the responsibility of the National Parks and Wildlife Service at 7 Ely Place Dublin 2 - (01) 888 3242/ LoCall 1890 20 20 21. www.npws.ie