Bird News Monday 27th February

A male Goosander was near Moorfields (Ruben Douglas).

A Chough was at Fair Head, Co Antrim (Clive Mellon).

The 5 Velvet Scoter were seen again off Lough Shore, Belfast Lough (Gerard McGeehan and Shirley Dunlop).

An adult Med Gull was at IKEA car park in Belfast (Garry Wilkinson).

A Great Spotted Woodpecker was drumming at Drum Manor Forest Park near Cookstown (Shane McGarvey).

It was a good day for raptor sightings around Inch Lake, Co Donegal, with 9 Buzzards, a Sparrowhawk, a Kestrel and a Peregrine seen.  Two Kingfishers were at Farland Bank (Christine Cassidy).

Rathlin Island today had a 3rd winter Iceland Gull, a Pochard, a Goldeneye and a Barnacle Goose.  An adult Iceland Gull flew past Runkerry Head, Portballintrae (Colin Guy).

Thanks to Rod Gillan for this photo of Golden Plover at Portstewart.

Bird News Sunday 26th February

RSPB Belfast WOW today had 2 Scaup, 2 Gadwall, 2 male Red-breasted Mergansers and an adult Mediterranean Gull. There was no sign of the Kumlien's Gull (Tom Ennis).

Around Larne Lough, 6 Purple Sandpiper were at Sandy Bay (Gerard McGeehan), 2 Twite were at Chaine Memorial this evening (Neal Warnock), an adult type Iceland Gull was seen from the Harbour Highway (Neal Warnock) and a first winter Iceland Gull was at Glynn this afternoon (Joe Lamont). Around 10 Mediterranean Gulls were seen at various locations.

An adult Med Gull was at Drains Bay (Neal Warnock).

20+ Waxwings were at the junction of Duncairn Gardens and Antrim Road in Belfast (Tom Clarke).

Thanks to John Bamford for the photo of a Treecreeper.

Bird News Saturday 25th February

A probable first winter Kumlien's Gull and a Med Gull were at RSPB Belfast WOW (Daniel Newton and Ronald Surgenor).

An adult Med Gull and 6 Twite were at Larne Harbour. Four adult and a 2nd winter Med Gull were at Glynn.  An adult Little Gull was at Drains Bay (Neal Warnock).

200 Whooper Swans were in fields between Bartons Bay and Lurgan (Thomas Campbell).

2 Waxwings were in a garden in Fivemiletown, Co Tyrone this afternoon (Colin Bell).

Little Gull, Neal Warnock

Bird News Friday 24th February

17 Waxwings were at Stockmans Lane near Boucher Road. Flock very flighty and moving between Musgrave Park and trees along Stockmans Lane  (Adam McClure).

5 Velvet Scoter, a Long-tailed Duck, adult Med Gull and a Great Northern Diver were at Lough Shore Park, Belfast Lough (Gerard McGeehan / Stuart McKee).

A first winter Iceland Gull came to roost at RSPB Belfast WOW this evening (Daniel Newton).

The Black Redstart was around the boat compound at Whitehead and the Brambling in a private garden (Cameron Moore).

A Great White Egret was at Lower Lough Erne (Irish Birding).

A flock of 20 Whooper Swans were in a field outside Donagh village, Co Fermanagh (John Cusack and Vanessa Dunn).

3 female Goosanders were at Lough Island Reavy, Co Down (David Nixon).

Approximately 10 Tree Sparrows were in a garden at Lowry Hill, Bangor this morning (Ken Davis).

A Brambling was at Lisnagra Woods, Inishowen, Co Donegal (Christine Cassidy).

Up to 400 Pied Wagtails were seen going to roost at Sprucefield car park this evening (Garry Wilkinson).

Brambling, Christine Cassidy
Black Redstart, Cameron Moore

Bird News Thursday 23rd February

Yesterday, a male Smew and a Long-tailed Duck were at Inch Island Lake, Donegal (Peter Robinson et al).

A first winter Kumlien's Gull was at RSPB Belfast WOW this morning (Stuart McKee).

Four adult Mediterranean Gulls were at Larne Harbour this morning (Neal Warnock). Another adult was at Whitehead (David Stirling). A second year Med Gull was at Ballylumford and an adult at Browns Bay, Islandmagee (Cameron Moore). Three Med Gulls were also seen at Glynn today (Joe Lamont). See photos by David and Cameron below.

The Brambling was seen again in Whitehead (Cameron Moore).

Med Gull, Cameron Moore

Med Gull, David Stirling

Bird News Wednesday 22nd February

A Great Spotted Woodpecker was drumming and giving good views at Oxford Island (Billy Miskelly).

A 1st-winter Med Gull has joined the adult at Corbet Lough (Robin Vage)

A Woodcock flew over the A8 at Corrs Corner just before 7am and 8 Med Gulls were at Glynn this afternoon (Adam McClure).

20 Waxwings were at Moylena Grove in Antrim (Davy Hunter), 15 Waxwings at Benagh Road, Greencastle (Stephen Foster) and a single Waxwing in Ballygally. A flock was also reported feeding on trees along Stockmans Lane (Dave Welsh).

The Green-winged Teal was still at Ecos Centre, the Red-throated Diver at Glenarm and Twite and Purple Sandpipers at Whitehead yesterday (Garry Wilkinson/Nigel Moore/Sandy McWilliams/David Tomlinson).

Bird News Tuesday 21st February

Three Jack Snipe and three Woodcock were near Kilrea (Adam McClure)

Late news from yesterday - a single Barnacle Goose was with 23 Brent Geese at Myroe (Tom Ennis / Tony Dodds).

The Bittern was looked for this afternoon at Lough Ross without success (Brian McCloskey).

A first winter Iceland Gull was at Whitehouse Lagoon this afternoon (David Nixon / Philip McHaffie).

Many thanks to Thomas Campbell for the photo of the Black Guillemots.

Bird News Monday 20th February

A Bittern was reported yesterday at Lough Ross near Crossmaglen, Co Armagh. Seen in the reed bed and in flight from a fishing boat (Alan Magee).  The reed bed is situated in the northwest corner, where the river enters the lough.  It is viewable from the public car park, but would require a telescope. Please do not enter private farmland without permission from landowners.

10 Waxwings were showing in Lisburn (Mrs. Shaw).

In Donegal, American Wigeon were reported from Culdaff and Malin Town (Birdguides).

Bird News Sunday 19th February

On Strangford Lough, there were 42 Slavonian Grebe between Greyabbey Bay and Kircubbin and a further 5 north-west of Newtownards Sailing Club  (Richard Weyl).

Two female Brambling and a Great Northern Diver were at Cushendun (Colin Guy).

A Waxwing was at Croft Road, Ballygally and a male Goosander and 6 Twite at Glenarm (Stephen Foster).

At Larne Lough this morning, an adult and 2nd winter Mediterranean Gull were at the Inver River and 4 adult Med Gulls and a 1st winter Iceland Gull at Glynn (Neal Warnock).

Late news from yesterday of a 3rd winter Iceland Gull at the Bann Estuary (Colin Guy).

Siskins are being widely reported from gardens.

Thanks to Gareth Platt for the image of two unfortunate Common Gulls from Millisle. There are more details about the ringed bird here.

Bird News Saturday 18th February

2 Siskin were visiting a garden in Lisburn this morning (Kevin Kirkham).

A Pink-footed Goose, 19 Greenland White-fronts and a Barnacle Goose were at Myroe Levels (Richard Donaghey).

27 Waxwings were along the Antrim Road in Belfast this morning (Larry Toal).

A Little Egret was seen along the canal at Scarva this afternoon (Karen Elliott).

4 Waxwings were at Knightsbridge Park, Stranmillis, Belfast this afternoon (Philip McErlean).

3 Ruff were at Dundrum Inner Bay South, 14 Purple Sandpiper at Newcastle Harbour and good numbers of Great Northern Divers offshore (David Nixon).

At least 7 Waxwings were still in Eden, Carrickfergus this afternoon (Cameron Moore, Shirley Dunlop and Neal Warnock).

Mediterranean Gulls continue to arrive in Larne Lough, with at least 6 present today including displaying adults at Glynn.  Two Purple Sandpipers were at Sandy Bay (Neal Warnock).

Lough Mourne, County Antrim had 360 Teal, 7 Pochard, 25 Goldeneye, 11 Lapwing and single Whooper Swans and Black-tailed Godwits (Neal Warnock).

Lurgan Park today had 40 Shoveler and 2 Little Egrets (Stephen Foster).

In Strangford Lough, 2 Black-throated Divers and a Jack Snipe were at Horse Island, 21 Slavonian Grebe in Greyabbey Bay and another 6 off Newtownards Sailing Club (Richard Weyl).

Many thanks to Christine Cassidy for the photo of the Sparrowhawk, Neal Warnock for the first Waxwing photo and to Philip McErlean for the second Waxwing photo.  More photos can be seen here


Bird News Friday 17th February

The Ruddy Shelduck was still present at Ballysaggart Lough. The bird had clipped wings and allowed close approach.  A Mediterranean Gull was also seen.  The Marsh Harrier was seen again at Oxford Island (Gerard McGeehan / Joe Lamont).

An adult Mediterranean Gull nearing full summer plumage was in Larne Harbour (Neal Warnock).

Between 7:30 and 8:40 this morning, Whitehead had 90 Red-throated Divers and 4 Great Northern Divers flying into Belfast Lough. 30+ Bottlenose Dolphins were also seen (Ian Enlander).

In Donegal, a Smew and juvenile Glaucous Gull were at Inch Island. A Velvet Scoter, Slavonian Grebe, Long-tailed Duck and 60 Scaup were at Mill Bay and a Ruddy Shelduck on the levels (Birdguides).

Goldeneye at Inch Island, Robin Cunningham

Bird News Thursday 16th February

c20 Waxwings are at Eden, Carrickfergus, this afternoon (Brian Sutton)

A Ruddy Shelduck was at Ballysaggart Lough, Dungannon, Co Tyrone. Possibly the first county record (Michael Stinson).

A Great Northern Diver was at Whiteabbey, a Skylark was on the beach (Paul McCullough).

The male Goosander and a Red-throated Diver were at Glenarm and the Twite flock at Whitehead (Garry Wilkinson/Nigel Moore).

Ruddy Shelduck, Michael Stinson