In a Civil Survey carried out in 1654, Dublin was the least
wooded county in Ireland. The Enclosure Acts between 1698
and 1791 required landowners and their tenants to plant trees,
and the present-day landscape of Fingal is largely the result
of these 18th and 19th century plantings.
Woodlands in Fingal
The woodlands in Fingal are generally found in former estates
and demesnes, many of which are now public parks. They often
have a mixed canopy of native Ash, Oak, Birch and Alder and
introduced species such as Beech, Sycamore, Horse-chestnut,
Wellingtonia, Lime, Spruces, Firs, and Scots Pine. The understorey
of these woodlands are rich in spring-flowering plants such
as Bluebells, Primrose, Violets, Anemones and Wood sanicle.
The Fingal woods are rich in wildlife such as Badgers, Foxes,
Hedgehogs, Red & Grey Squirrel and five bat species; Brown
long-eared bat, Leislers bat, Common and Soprano Pipistrelle
and Whiskered bat. The woodlands are also home to about 25-30
common woodland birds such as Wren, Robin, Blackbird, Chaffinch,
Goldcrest and predators such as Buzzard, Sparrowhawk, Kestrel
and Long-eared Owl.
Find out what we are doing to protect and restore our woodlands. Want to know more about the plants and animals in our woodlands?
Check out the publications on woodland plants, mammals, birds
and mushrooms in Fingal.
Hedgerows in Fingal
There is currently about 2,660 km of hedgerows in Fingal.
This number is declining, more so in recent years, with a
66% decline occurring since 1985. As there has been very little
planting of new hedgerows in recent years, they are becoming
an endangered feature of our landscape in Fingal as development
and neglect all continue to take their toll.
The hedgerows in Fingal are usually comprise of Whitethorn
mixed with a variety of other species such as Dog Rose, Elder,
Blackthorn, Holly and Hazel. Many of our hedgerows have trees
growing in them. The most common hedgerow tree is Ash, followed
by Sycamore, Elm, Willow, Wild Cherry and Oak.
Hedgerows are important landscape features for wildlife. They
provide food and shelter for wildlife within the intensively
farmed countryside. They also act as corridors for animals
to move from one area to another.
Want to know more about hedgerows, check out the publication
on Fingals Hedgerows.