Bird News Saturday 28th February

An adult Ring-billed Gull was off Glynn Station (Neal Warnock)

The Spotted Redshank was again seen at the RSPB Belfast Harbour Estate.(Irishbirding)

The Little Egret was in the stream running alongside the Knock golf club on the N'Ards Road in Dundonald around 10am this morning.(Conrad Watson)

At Inch, Co Donegal were 6 Pintail 2, Gadwall, 2 Scaup, the drake Smew, a 1st yr Glaucous Gull and two 1st yr Ring-billed Gulls.  Blanketnook had a 2nd yr Glaucous Gull along with 3 Slavonian Grebes (Chris Ingram, Theo Campbell and Richard Smith)

Fanad Head had four 1st winter Iceland Gulls, a 1w Glaucous Gull and a 1w Kumliens Gull (Wilton Farrelly)
Barnacle Geese - Christine Cassidy

Male Blackcap - Linda Thompson.

Bird News Friday 27th February

This morning a Red Kite flew above the Ballyblack Road towards Knockinelder Bay, Portaferry. (Rachel Hart).

The 2 Iceland Gull (first and second-winter) were still at the mouth of the bush at Portballintrae. - feeding on a dead dog (Derek McIntyre). 

A Spotted Redshank was at Kinnegar Pool (Joe Lamont).

Thanks to Christine Cassidy for the picture of the female Blackcap from her garden and to Karl Martin for the pictures of the Reed Bunting and Redpoll from Belfast Lough WOW Reserve.

Bird News Thursday 26th February

Late news for yesterday was the male Smew was at the Farland Bank Hide, Inch Island. (Peter Robinson+Coleraine RSPB group)

The Little Egret was at Moat Park Dundonald this morning (Rhona Galway)

The first winter Iceland Gull was again at the RSPB Belfast Harbour reserve (Derek Polley)

A second-winter Iceland Gull was still at the mouth of the Bush at Portballintrae (Derek McIntyre)

At Larne Lough the Green-wiged Teal and 2 Little Egret were at Ballycarry Bridge. A second-winter Mediterranean Gull and 2 Gadwall were at Glynn (Cameron Moore)

Thanks to Jane McLaughlin for the pic of the flock of Knot at Whitehouse Lagoon, Bert Montgomery for the drake Smew at Inch and Christine Cassidy for the Buzzard:

Knot, Jane McLaughlin

Smew, Bert Montgomery

Buzzard, Christine Cassidy

Bird News Wednesday 25th February

The Iceland Gull was at RSPB Belfast Harbour WOW reserve. The Little Egret was at Kinnegar (Derek Polley)

2 Iceland Gull (first-winter and second-winter) were at the mouth of the River Bush at Portballintrae (Derek McKintyre)

The White-tailed Eagle known as Ingar and which had been frequenting the area around upper Lough Erne, has been found dead. The PSNI are investigating the cause of death. (NIRSG). See:

Thanks to Ian Jackson for this pic of a Long-tailed Tit:

Bird News Tuesday 24th February

The female Goosander was still at Glynn (Gerard McGeehan)

Thanks to Christine Cassidy for the picture of the female Sparrowhawk and to Robin Cunningham for the picture of the Wigeon.

Bird News Monday 23rd February

The 1st winter Glaucous Gull was still at Portavogie harbour , Co Down (Keith Bennett)

Tyrella Co.Down ...has a Merlin,800 Golden Plover, 1 Grey Plover, 350 Linnets a Twite,50 Tree Sparrow,... Comber Estuary had 100 Whooper Swan and the 1st winter Iceland Gull still present at the RSPB Belfast Harbour Estate.(Chris & Tim Murphy, Mark Wotham)

The Spoonbill was at Castle Espie today.

Late news from yesterday that a report of a Hawfinch was seen at Oxford Island, we have no further information (Irishbirding)

Our thanks to Christine Cassidy for the photo of three Black-tailed Godwits taken at the new RSPB Belfast Harbour reserve, just a quick note for those who have not visited yet, the new main building will be closed on Tuesday's but the lagoon can still be viewed from the roadside hide and the lane hide. Also to Stephen Maxwell for the Buzzard in flight and the Goldfinch. 

Bird News Sunday 22nd February

The Ring-billed Gull was still at Carrickfergus Harbour this morning. (Adam McClure)

A first winter Iceland Gull was at Belfast Harbour RSPB WOW reserve this morning (Garry Armstrong)

There are now two 1st winter Iceland Gulls in Larne Harbour (Neal Warnock)

On Strangford Lough at Horse Island 5 Slavonian Grebe and a Jack Snipe (Richard Weyl)

A Black-throated Diver and 8 Red-throated Diver were at Portmuck on Island Magee (Gerard McGeehan, Shirley Dunlop)

You can email your rare and scarce bird news to

Thanks to Linda Thompson for this pic of the female Goosander at Glynn Halt (taken yesterday):

Bird News Saturday 21st February

Two Glaucous Gulls were in Portrush today, at the car park beside Ramore Head (John Clarke).

The female Goosander still present at Craigavon South Lake. (David Knight).

A male Smew was on Inch Lake in Donegal. (Robin Cunningham).

The adult Ring-billed Gull was still at Carrickfergus Marina. (Birdguides).

A male Hen Harrier flew NE over the Collin Road, Ballyclare at around 4.30 this afternoon. (Thom Shannon).

Thanks to John Clarke for the picture of one of the Ramore Head Glaucous Gulls, to David Knight for the picture of the female Goosander, to Angus Kennedy for the pictures of the Ringed Plover and the Teal and to Robin Cunningham for the picture of the male Smew:



Bird News Friday 20th February.

The adult Mediterranean Gull was still at Newcastle (Leonard Charles).

 5 Crossbill were with Siskin and Lesser Redpoll at Woodburn Forest. An adult Mediterranean Gull, Kingfisher and 15 Snipe were at Whitehouse and 200 Knot at Belfast Harbour Lagoon (Gerard McGeehan).
Song Thrush - Tony Donaldson.

Widgeon - Stephen Maxwell.

NIRSG Conference - Sat 7th March

Bird News Thursday 19th February

An Iceland Gull was at the weir in Newcastle Boating Pond (Leonard Charles)

A first-winter Iceland Gull was at Greenisland Sea Park (Gerard McGeehan)

Portmuck, Islandmagee this afternoon had a male Hen hHrrier, a Buzzard, a Red-throated Diver and 9 Great Northern Divers. (Robert McDowell)

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Thanks to William Smiton for this pic of a Wigeon flock and Tony Donaldson for the Little Egret with the Grey Heron (from the Quoile):

Bird News Wednesday 18th February

Along the Outer Ards, an adult Sabine's Gull was watched for 15 mins close inshore at Burial Island (Billy Miskelly)

A 'Parvipes' Canada Goose was with 2000 Barnacle Geese, the drake American wigeon and a 1st winter Iceland Gull at Trawbreaga Bay, Malin Head (Ronan McLaughlin)

Many thanks to David Knight for this pic of the adult Iceland Gull at Derry yesterday:

Bird News Tuesday 17th February.

An adult Iceland Gull was along the River Foyle at McFarlands Quay near Sainsburys in Derry (David Knight).

The 1st winter Iceland Gull was still at Kinnegar, Belfast Lough. If the bird is not on the beach area, it can be in the sewage ponds.

The ad Ring-billed Gull was seen at Derry Quay. (Christine Cassidy)

Unusually 2 Greenshank were on Lower Lough Erne islands RSPB reserve Co Fermanagh today. A Great Northern Diver was there yesterday (Brad Robson)

Ring-billed Gull  - Christine Cassidy.

Pied Wagtail - Pete Wedderburn.

Pair of Teal - William Smiton

Bird News Monday 16th February

Today at Myroe Levels 800 Brent,3 Greenshank, a Little Egret, 20 Teal and 900 Golden Plovers (C. Stewart / B.Montgomery)

A Jack Snipe was near Dromore, Co. Tyrone this morning. (Adam McClure)

An adult Med Gull was along the shore / promenade at Newcastle, Co Down. Also a female Long-tailed Duck and at least 350 Sanderling (Stuart McKee)

Thanks to William Smiton for this pic of a flock of Brent Geese and Alan Hillen for the Buzzard. The Common Dolphin below is currently washed up on Portstewart Strand:

William Smiton, Brent Geese:

Paul Hillen, Buzzard:

Med Gilulk, Stuart McKee:

Common Dolphin, Portstewart:

Bird News Sunday 15th February

The drake Gargany was still at Lough Mourne, a juvenile Whooper Swan was also present. the Spotted Redshank was at Kinnegar pool. (Joe Lamont/Ian Graham/Philip West).

The first winter Iceland Gull was at Kinnegar Water Works. (Ian Graham/Philip West).

Orlock Point had 2 Whimbrel. Yesterday a Black-throated Diver was at Cloughey Bay. (Richard Weyl).

2 Red Kites and a Buzzard were at Ballyblack Road East near the four road ends between Ards and Bangor. (Denis Chambers).

Thanks to Joe Lamont for the first picture of the Spotted Redshank and to Stuart McKee for the picture of the Iceland Gull :

Iceland Gull - Stuart McKee

Spotted Redshank - Joe Lamont
Spotted Redshank - Garry Armstrong


Bird News Saturday 14th February

A drake Garganey is at Lough Mourne near Carrickfergus, with 138 Teal. Also 2 Whoopers, 12 Goldeneye & 300+ Linnets present (Neal Warnock)

A Red necked Grebe was this afternoon at Lough Swilly Co Donegal from the Friary but drifted to right as tide began to fall (Brad Robson)

The Spoonbill, 30 Grey Plover and a Kingfisher were at Castle Espie in Strangford Lough (Gerard McGeehan, Shirley Dunlop)

In south Down 2 Black-throated Diver, 25 Twite, 50 Skylark and 6 Whooper Swan (in flight) were at Rossglass. 2 Little Egret, 1,000 Golden Plover and 280 Dunlin were at Killough Harbour (Tim Murphy)

A first-winter Iceland Gull (different to the recent Loughshore bird) was at Kinnegar shore and the Spotted Redshank nearby at the RSPB Harbour Lagoon. 5 Long-tailed Duck (3 male and 2 female) were in flight at Loughshore Park (Stuart McKee)

Thanks to Angus Kennedy for this pic of a male Stonechat. You can see more pics at

Bird News Friday 13th February

Yesterday there was a large flock of Fieldfares and a few Redwing in fields between River Lagan and Blaris Road, Lisburn. A Jay and a male Bullfinch were in trees at the river bank. At the same location today two Buzzards were feeding on the ground. (Michael Loughbridge).

A Little Egret was in a field in Woodgrange near Downpatrick this afternoon. (Anne Dinsmore)

Thanks to Andrew Poots for the picture of the Yellowhammer, to Eric Phillips for the picture of the Grey Heron and to John Clarke for the picture of the Lapwings.

Belfast WOW

Just a reminder that the RSPB's Window On Wildlife (Belfast Harbour Reserve) opens again next Wednesday. You can see further information at:

Some of the volunteers who will be welcoming visitors to the new facilities:

Bird News Thursday 12th February

Yesterday Lough Island Reavey had a male Goosander; Bannanstown Road Castlewellan had 2 Red Kites. Minerstown had a female Merlin. Newcastle Harbour had 17 Purple Sandpiper. (Robert Hart, Michael Richardson & Fulton Somerville)

The Spotted Redshank was at Belfast Lough RSPB Reserve (Matthew Tickner, Ann Guichard, Hill Dick)

Thanks to David Hunter for this pic of a Yellowhammer, Cameron Moore for another ringed Twite and Christine Cunningham for the Whooper Swan in flight. You can see more bird pics at: 

Bird News Wednesday 11th February

An adult Mediteranean Gull was seen at Kinnegar (Brian Murphy)

The Twite photographed by Cameron Moore recently at Mill Bay, Islandmagee (pic below), came from the Mull of Kintyre. It was ringed during the autumn of 2011 (Eddie Maguire MSBO)

The Slaty-backed Gull was seen again at the pier at Killybeggs, Co Donegal (Ralph Sheperd)

Thanks to Christine Cassidy for the pics below of the male and female Blackcaps:

Bird News Tuesday 10th February

Yestreday 6 Twite were in a garden in Larne (Bertie Spence).

A Buzzard, a Raven and 3 Snipe were on the waste land between Sainsburys store and petrol station at Sprucefield, outside Lisburn. (Michael Loughbridge).

A male Blackcap is visiting a garden off the Holywood Road, Belfast. (William Smiton)

74 Snipe were on one island at Lower Lough Erne islands RSPB reserve, Co Fermanagh (Brad Robson)

Thanks to Allen Gillespie for the picture of the Greenshank, William Smiton for the picture of the Little Grebe and Peter Casey for the picture of the Siskins.