Common pipistrelle bat, courtesy of

Ecological studies are being carried out in the Fingal area as part of the Greater Dublin Drainage project. Extensive ornithological, terrestrial, freshwater and marine surveys have been undertaken to-date and will continue over the coming months. The purpose of these surveys is to clearly identify and recognise the current existing ecological environment within the Greater Dublin Drainage project area, which also takes account of seasonal and annual variation where possible. Establishing the current existing ecological environment within the Greater Dublin Drainage project area will enable accurate predictions of the potential impacts of this project on that receiving environment. These studies include searching for the presence of bats.

Bats contribute to the biodiversity of an area through pollination, seed dispersal and insect control. Even Ireland’s smallest bat, the pipistrelle which will fit on the end of your thumb, can consume 3,000 insects in one night. Bats are a highly social species, often occurring in large numbers. They traditionally roost in trees, caves, old buildings and bridges.

The Greater Dublin Drainage project is not only needed to meet current and future economic, industrial and residential needs, it is also vital to the protection of the environment and to meet the EU Water Framework Directive standards. The Greater Dublin Drainage Project Team are currently undertaking technical studies on the three emerging preferred site options for the new regional wastewater treatment works and the associated orbital pipeline and outfall location. It is anticipated that the decision on the emerging preferred site option will be announced in spring 2013. Keep checking our website for other interesting findings from these studies regarding the ecology and heritage of Fingal.