Updated: 16/02/17 : 05:33:35
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Sligo-based survey plane may startle Mayo and Donegal stock

Livestock owners in Mayo and Donegal are being alerted to low-flying aircraft activity in there area which may startle their stock.

The activity is on the back of the next phase of Tellus – a geological mapping project which collects geophysical and geochemical data on rocks, soil and water across Ireland  is set to ‘take off’ Donegal in early March.

Involving a low-flying plane equipped with state-of-the-art geophysical technology, the aircraft will be based at Sligo airport and traverse the skies of Mayo and Donegal into the autumn months (weather permitting).

Survey activity will assist in understanding the local environment, soil management and natural resource potential for these counties.

To gather data, the Tellus project has commissioned an aircraft equipped with the latest geophysical technology, which surveys rural areas at a height of 60m – approximately eight times the height of a two storey house.

The aircraft is a white twin propeller plane operated by the specialist survey company, Sander Geophysics Ltd, and is easily identified by its red tail, black stripe and registration number C-GSGF.

The airborne survey will operate safely within Irish Aviation Authority permits, however, the sound of the plane flying overhead is similar to that of a passing lorry and could startle young animals and sensitive livestock, such as horses, pedigree cattle and poultry flocks.

Communicating with the local community is a priority for Tellus, said Aoife Brady, Project Manager who said Tellus operates an extensive communications programme to inform the public of survey operations.