Michael D Higgins welcomes two Connemara ponies to graze at Áras an Uachtaráin

Aimhirgin and Grey Lass grazing as part of project aimed at better land management

Two Connemara ponies, Aimhirgin and Grey Lass, are currently grazing at Áras an Uachtaráin as part of a project aimed at better managing the land for nature.

Indigenous breeds of cattle and ponies will be grazing at the residence of President Michael D Higgins at certain times of the year to reduce the nutrient load of the grasslands.

President Higgins asked the Office of Public Works (OPW) to commission a year-long biodiversity audit, and to make recommendations for how the Áras could be better managed for nature.

The report was compiled by scientists from Trinity College Dublin and delivered late last year.


One of the main recommendations of the report was to put in place a more sustainable management regime for the grasslands at Áras an Uachtaráin, including the introduction of indigenous breeds of cattle and ponies.

“Their grazing will be combined with periodic mowing, in an effort to reduce the nutrient load in the soil and create, over time, the right conditions for naturally diverse grasslands, which will support a healthier population of insects, birds and mammals,” a statement from Áras an Uachtaráin said.

Sarah Burns

Sarah Burns

Sarah Burns is a reporter for The Irish Times