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Agricultural Catchments Week 2022

During 21-25 February the Agricultural Catchments Programme (ACP) ran a week showcasing measures to improve Ireland's water quality. The theme for #ACPweek22 was 'Working together for water quality.' Speakers highlighted the broad range of work being done by the ACP and some of the organisations it has worked with since 2008. It featured research, advisory and technical work that continues to be delivered in partnership with the over 300 catchment farmers. The ACP acknowledges participants and others who contributed to the week.

Monday 21 February: Programme overview

The first day focussed on an introduction to the Agricultural Catchments Programme (ACP). Working with over 300 farmers across six catchments since 2008, wide range of water monitoring equipment is sited on their land and extensive data collected on their farming activities. The programme's findings are being used to improve Ireland's water quality

  • ACP Agricultural Catchment Specialist Edward Burgess - programme key learnings for nitrates. Article  Podcast
  • ACP Agronomist Bridget Lynch and ACP Agricultural Catchment Specialist Edward Burgess  - introduction to the week. Video
  • ACP Catchment Scientist Per-Erik Mellander - overview of the programme's research from over ten years of intensive monitoring. Article  Video
  • ACP Farmer John Walsh - farming in the Timoleague catchment and links with the nearby Clonakilty Agricultural College. Video
  • ACP Technologist David Ryan and ACP Technician John Kennedy - behind-the-scenes, maintenance of the measuring probes in the monitoring stations at the outlet of each catchment. Video

Tuesday 22 February: Knowledge transfer

Dissemination of research findings from the Agricultural Catchments Programme (ACP) has been a key objective since its establishment and day three featured how the programme advisors are working with catchment farmers in delivering key messages to improve nutrient use efficiency. Also featured was the Teagasc/Carbery joint programme and an ASSAP priority area for action (PAA). Research findings from the ACP and other Teagasc research are being used in both of these programmes

  • ACP Agricultural Catchment Specialist Edward Burgess & ACP Advisor Oisín Coakley - management of farm nutrients and making best use of soil test results. Article 1  Article 2  Video
  • Monitor Farmer David Walsh, Carbery Group Sustainability Director Enda Buckley & Teagasc Programme Co-ordinator John McNamara - the Teagasc/Carbery Joint Programme. Video
  • PAA Farmer Tim O'Donovan, Teagasc ASSAP Advisor Lane Giles & Carbery Group Farm Sustainability Manager Aoife Feeney - ASSAP working together in the PAA Caha catchment, Co Cork. Video

Wednesday 23 February: Water quality research and impact

The Agricultural Catchments Programme (ACP) has been monitoring aquatic ecology since the start and research continues to evolve into new areas such as the sub catchment approach. The National Federation of Group Water Schemes (NFGWS) helps to protect rural water supplies with its source protection plans. Using targeted measures, actions are science-based and include learnings from the ACP and other Teagasc research. Also featured was the installation of a solar water pump in the Stranooden Group Water Scheme with advice from the local Teagasc ASSAP advisor

  • ACP Hydrochemist Researcher Jason Galloway & Aquatic Services Unit Freshwater Ecologist Lauren Williams - ecology surveys in the catchments. Article - sediment dynamics  Video
  • ACP Hydrochemist Researcher Jason Galloway - the 'sub catchment' approach for water research. Article - modelling  Video
  • NFGWS Source Protection Officer Patrick McCabe, ACP Sreenty-Corduff Farmer David Mitchell & Stranooden Group Water Scheme (GWS) Member Frank Evans - source protection is a community effort. Video
  • Stranooden GWS Manager James McGlone & Teagasc ASSAP Advisor Domhnall Kennedy - a solar water pump installation in Co Monaghan. Video

Thursday 24 February: Gaseous emissions, nitrogen fertiliser & white clover research

Phase 4 of the Agricultural Catchments Programme (ACP) has seen expansion into GHG, ammonia and carbon sequestration research. In working with the over 300 catchment farmers, localised research on potential mitigation measures like white clover and protected fertilisers is of interest and relevance. Clonakilty Agricultural College located near our Timoleague catchment has been conducting research with Moorepark AGRIP on white clover and protected urea incorporation into intensive dairy grazing systems for the last number of years

  • ACP Agronomist Bridget Lynch & Moorepark AGRIP Researcher Brian McCarthy - an update on research to reduce N fertiliser use with white clover. Article - clover/protected urea  Video
  • ACP Agronomist Bridget Lynch & Moorepark AGRIP PhD Walsh Scholar Áine Murray - an update on research to protect fertiliser N. Video
  • ACP Researcher Macdara O'Neill - new gaseous emissions research in the ACP. Article  Video
  • ACP Technologist Syed Faiz-ul Islam - site selection for eddy covariance towers. Video 

Friday 25 February: Agricultural education

Each year the Agricultural Catchments Programme (ACP) welcomes visiting groups from the Agricultural Colleges, Institutes of Technology, Technological Universities and Universities. Our findings feed into local advisory messages, college curricula and some collaborative research trials are also conducted in the catchments

ACP is funded by: