We would like to introduce our honorary Ambassador for February, Edmund Joyce from Ballybeg Borris in Co.Carlow. We are delighted to include Edmund in our network of Farming For Nature Ambassadors. These individuals have been chosen in acknowledgement of their long-standing commitment and contribution to farming for nature on their land and in their community.
Edmund Joyce is a drystock farmer from near Borris in Co Carlow. He was nominated in 2018 for the Farming For Nature Awards. He runs a herd of limousin-cross suckler cows and a flock of commercial Suffolk-cross ewes on the 125 acre holding. Since taking over the farm in 2007 Edmund has planted over 6000 native trees in different newly established groves around the farm. Red squirrels are a regular sight on his farm, and all 15 bird boxes have been occupied each year, even a pair of great spotted woodpeckers took up residence in one of the boxes this year. Both Soprano Pipistrelle bats and Brown Long Eared bats also present in the woodland. Whilst a number of barn owls are particularly attracted to the long grasses in an established wild meadow area and are nesting in the trees. The native apple orchard planted about 7 years ago is providing an abundance of fruit whilst the cottage garden has also been planted up with flowers and shrubs which are a haven for bees, butterflies and hedgehogs. Edmund chose the planting to compliment the setting whilst also providing a succession of plants from early spring right through to winter for nectar feeding insects. Water voles occupy a watercourse which runs the length of the farm whilst the dry-stone granite walls that subdivide the farm have provided ideal cover for other small mammals including stoats and pine martens. Edmund was nominated in 2018 and given the role of honorary ambassador in February 2020. More information on Edmund’s farm and a film can be viewed here.