National Lottery boost for Northern Ireland's natural heritage

(via Heritage Lottery Fund)

More than £500,000 has been awarded by HLF to support two new natural heritage projects in Northern Ireland.
 
Ulster Wildlife’s Sea Deep project will protect the endangered shark, skate and ray species found in our local seas.  A £208,000 grant will be used to increase awareness and understanding of these local populations and help identify methods to protect and restore these threatened species.  An Northern Ireland-wide tagging programme, innovative restoration techniques, volunteer scheme and dedicated events programme will allow local people to become conservation champions for species including flapper skate, porbeagle shark and cuckoo ray.
 
A £368,700 award will help connect people to the natural, cultural and built heritage of Drumnaph Nature Reserve, near Maghera.  The Reserve is an exciting collaboration between the local community and the Woodland Trust, having been secured with the help of an HLF grant in 2012.  This new project will create new paths and routes, install fun and engaging interpretations and improve visitor facilities.  An events programme will include activities such as heritage craft and archaeology days, while a network of volunteers from the wider community will be recruited and trained in a range of conservation, biodiversity and rural skills.