Protect Natural Environment in Co. Mayo
If you visit County Mayo and you are an enthusiast for walking, cycling, mountain biking or any other outdoor activity here are the seven principles provided by Leave No Trace Ireland to help you to protect the natural environment while still enjoying your activities with freedom.
1 - Plan Ahead and Prepare
Before you go for your walk check you can have access in the area you wish to visit. Be sure you are able for that walk's level and have the correct equipment.
Check also the weather forecast, and always be prepared for the changing weather conditions. Leave details of your plans.
2 - Be Considerate of Others
Respect properties and people who live and work in the area you are visiting.
Park appropriately and keep clear the access to gates, forest entrances or narrow roads. Farm machinery and locals may need access all the time.
Do not damage walls, fences and crops.
Take care of archeological structure, old walks or artefacts.
Respect other walkers and keep noise to a minimum, listen to nature's sounds.
3 - Respect Farm Animals and Wildlife
Remember to keep your dogs under close control and bring them onto hills or farmland only if the landowner allows it and adhere to local guidelines for visitors.
Spot wild animals and birds from distance and don't disturb them in any seasons, but above all, in summer when they nest or raise young.
Do not feed wild animals and remember to remain at a safe distance from farm animals.
Teach your children not to pick wild flowers up but leave them to set their seed so other children can enjoy them too.
4 - Travel and Camp on Durable Ground
Durable ground includes established tracks, forest roads, campsites and dry grasses.
To avoid damage travel in single file in the middle of the track even when wet or muddy.
Leave your campsite or picnic area as you find it.
5 - Leave What You Find
Conserve the present, leave rocks, flowers, plants, animals and other natural objects as you find them.
Remember fallen trees are wild habitats too, leave them and do not remove them.
Do not build rock cairns, structures or shelters.
6 - Dispose of Waste Properly
Take home all litter, leftover food and hygiene products.
Remember: "If you carry it on, please carry it off".
Wash yourself or your dishes 30m away from streams or lakes.
7 - Minimise the Effects of Fire
Fires can cause lasting impacts and are dangerous to forests and habitats.
Light fires only where permitted and keep them small.
Use sticks from the ground and replace any stone you may have removed to make a camp fire.
Do not burn plastics or other substances which emit toxic fumes.
Scatter cool ashes appropriately.
Find out more on Leave No Trace the organisation promoting the responsible use of outdoors in Ireland.