Measures and contact information for NPWS during the COVID-19 crisis
Date Released: Wednesday, January 6, 2021
National Parks and Wildlife Service and Covid-19
The National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) is following all the public health advice from Government in relation to Covid-19, and has put in place a range of measures to protect staff and help prevent the spread of the virus.
Our essential operational work is continuing. This includes keeping our national parks and nature reserves open. We continue to provide wildlife and CITES licensing and other services to our customers across the country. We also continue to provide advice in our role as a statutory consultee in relation to planning and development and on referrals from other consent authorities (under a variety of legislation) and to make annual payments under the Cessation of Turf Cutting Compensation Scheme. In addition, in our capacity as the competent authority in the State for a number of important international conventions and agreements for nature, we continue to service these and maintain Ireland’s participation in efforts to halt biodiversity loss globally.
As the Covid-19 measures continue in the coming weeks, we will keep operational activities, and advice to our staff and the public, under review in the light of any new public health advice from Government. We will provide updated information here.
Many of our staff are now working remotely. Staff can be contacted by email. As some staff do not have access to their office phone or voice mail we recommend contact is made in the first instance by email for the time being.
Meetings and engagements with our customers continue but, in line with current guidelines, where possible these are now being conducted by email, phone and call & video conferencing.
Our public offices and some of our visitor centres are temporarily closed to visitors. Please do not call to our office locations at this time. Written correspondence can be sent to our offices but response times may be necessarily delayed. We recommend, where at all possible, that queries or correspondence be sent to us electronically at present.
- General queries should be sent to email@example.com
- Queries relating to wildlife licensing should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Queries relating to the Cessation of Turf Cutting Compensation Scheme including relocation should be sent to email@example.com
- Queries relating to raised bog restoration should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Queries relating to site designation matters should be sent to email@example.com
- Queries specifically relating to science and biodiversity matters (including issues relating to the National Biodiversity Plan, biodiversity awareness and EU Regulations on invasive alien species or the Nagoya Protocol) should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Queries relating to CITES should be sent to email@example.com
- Queries relating to zoo licensing and inspections should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Queries in relation to development applications which may impact on built and natural heritage should be sent to email@example.com
- Queries in relation to EU LIFE projects should be sent to LIFE@housing.gov.ie
National Parks and Wildlife Service staff are an integral part of the crime prevention, investigation and prosecution architecture of the State. They are authorised officers under the Wildlife Acts and European Community (Birds and Natural Habitats) Regulations 2011, charged with the protection of endangered habitats, species and wildlife generally, and the investigation of suspected wildlife crime. In the context of the Covid-19 restrictions, NPWS staff are recognised as essential workers and are not confined to indoor duties. An Garda Síochána are also authorised officers under the Wildlife Acts and the 2011 Regulations and NPWS staff are liaising with them in respect of wildlife crime as appropriate.
National Parks and Nature Reserves
Our National Parks and Nature Reserves remain open, but some visitor centres, information points and other facilities are temporarily closed. We encourage you to continue to enjoy these outdoor resources but we advise you to adhere to the current government guidelines relating to travel and social distancing.
In consultation with An Garda Síochána some NPWS site car parks may be closed during Level 5 restrictions. The public are advised to monitor National Parks or Nature Reserves social media accounts before you travel.
We remind you of the importance of adhering to current public health advice, particularly in relation to physical distancing at all times. Please ensure that you maintain a distance of 2 metres between you and others at all times. Please check the individual Park websites for more information on visitor centres.