Farmers on designated land could be paid up to €400/ha for rush control and be paid to extensively graze livestock.

The measure is one of a suite of new agri environment schemes proposed by the National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS).

Farmers could also receive €1,000 for putting in a farm pond, €200/ha for scrub removal and €350/ha to stop spreading fertiliser on certain land.

The report proposes that farmers be paid €15m per year for the administrative cost of managing these designated lands.

Each scheme would be tailored to the habitat or bird in the area and could apply to a targeted amount of hectares.

Pesticide reduction, fencing off areas from livestock encroachment and the planting of native trees are all measures included in the scheme proposals.

Some 35,000 farmers have designated, eg SAC, SPA and NHA.