Despite the fact that nitrogen is a potential acceptor dopant and one of the most studied elements in ZnO, lacking understanding of associated defects and their thermal evolution limits realization of reliable p-type doping of ZnO. Here, we use ion implantation to introduce N at room temperature (RT) and 15 K in ZnO samples with/without a pre-existing buried disorder layer formed by Ag ion bombardment aligned along the  direction. The buried layer contains a high concentration of extended defects, which act as traps for migrating point defects. Channeling analysis shows that reverse annealing occurs in all the N implanted samples during post-implant heat treatment above 600 °C with strong non-linear additive damage accumulation in the co-implanted samples. The reverse annealing effect is less stable in the RT co-implanted sample and the data suggest that a high local concentration of intrinsic point defects, like Zn interstitials, promotes the stability of the N-defect clusters responsible for the reverse annealing. This suggestion is also corroborated by enhanced and defect-mediated Ag outdiffusion at 1100 °C in the RT co-implanted samples.