Bird News Tuesday 27th September

Yesterday a single Curlew Sandpiper, 5 Ruff, 2 juvenile males, 1 juvenile female and 2 adult winter males, and 35 Knot including many juveniles, were at Belfast Lough RSPB WOW reserve. (Tom Ennis).

Two Med Gulls were at Christie Park Coleraine and a Guillemot on the river. The Glaucous Gull was at the usual spot at Burger King (John Clarke)

Two Pectoral Sandpipers were seen in the SW corner of Lough Beg (Graham Mitchell)

Golden Plover numbers have built up at Myroe with 700 - 800 there today (Graham Mitchell)

The Hen Harrier was at Portmore Lough late afternoon (Richard Caves)

A high count of 30 Mediterranean Gulls were at Kerrykeel, Donegal. Fanad Head had a Pomarine Skua and Leaches Petrel (Ralph Shepperd)

There was still one Curlew Sandpiper and five Ruff at RSPB WOW earlier today. (Daniel Newton)

Med Gull, John Clark:


Hen Harrier, Richard Caves:

Bird News Monday 26th September

 Ramore Head quiet this morning 0830-1100 producing Leach’s Petrel, Great Skua, three Arctic Skua and a single Sooty Shearwater (Dermot Hughes). Also the first Whooper Swans of the autumn (John Spottiswood/John Clarke).

Sea watching off Rathlin this morning produced just 12 Sooty Shearwater (Ric Else & Hazel Watson).

Thanks to John Clarke for the Whooper Swan photograph:



Bird News Sunday 25th September

The Turtle Dove is still present at Fanad Head, just above the Lighthouse Tavern (Jamie Bliss).

A Pink-footed Goose is with the Greylags at Anne's Point in Strangford Lough. (Billy Miskelly).

A juvenile Hen Harrier was at Portmore Lough (Michael Latham).

The Osprey was still at the Quoile. (Gareth Carville).

Two Curlew Sandpipers were still at Belfast Lough RSPB WOW reserve. (Daniel Newton).

Hen Harrier, Michael Latham:

Turtle Dove, Wilton Farrelly:

Bird News Saturday 24th September

A Great White Egret was near the Kinnegoe hide at Oxford Island. 2 Manx Shearwaters were off the carpark at the back of the Discovery Centre. (Garry Armstrong).

A Little Stint, 2 Curlew Sandpipers and 4 Ruff are at RSPB WoW (Daniel Newton)

A Turtle Dove is at Fanad Head, Donegal (Wilton Farrelly)

A Lapland Bunting is on Rathlin, a Whimbrel and 3 Twite are also present. (Ric Else & Hazel Watson).

A Merlin, a Red Grouse, an untagged Red Kite and 5 Crossbills were in the Antrim Hills (Michael Latham)

At least 8 Arctic Skua and a juvenile Little Gull were at Magilligan. (John Clarke, Richard Donaghey).

Turtle Dove, Wilton Farrelly:


Red Grouse Michael Latham

Merlin Michael Latham

Arctic Skua & Sandwich Tern John Clarke

Arctic Skua & Sandwich Tern John Clarke

Crossbill - Michael Latham

Red Kite Michael Latham


Bird News Friday 23rd September

 A Little Stint, 4 Curlew Sandpipers and a Grey Plover were at the Bann Estuary. (John Spottiswood).

The Glenshane Pass today had a Red Grouse, Kestrel and 4 Snipe. (Godfrey McRoberts).

A single Curlew Sandpiper and 2 Ruff were at Belfast Lough RSPB WOW reserve this afternoon. (Daniel Newton).

Four Little Stints and two Curlew Sandpipers were at Blanket Nook in Donegal. (Derek Brennan).

Thanks to William Smiton for the picture of the Kingfisher:



Bird News Thursday 22nd September

 At least eight Wheatears at Ramore Head (John Clarke).

A ringtail Hen Harrier in off the sea at Rinagree (John Clarke).

Two Curlew Sandpipers, four Ruff and a juvenile Common Tern at Belfast Lough RSPB (Derek Polley). Six Curlew Sandpipers, four Ruff and two Knot this evening (Daniel Newton).

One Curlew Sandpiper and 34 Ruff including 28 juveniles at the south end of Lough Beg this morning, also two Reed Warblers but no sign of any Pectoral Sandpipers (David Steele).

First Redwing of the autumn; earliest for observers by more than a week (Ric Else & Hazel Watson).

A juvenile Little Stint was at Kilclief, Strangford Narrows (David Nixon).

Thanks to David Nixon for the Little Stint photographs:




Bird News Wednesday 21st September

A single Curlew Sandpiper & 9 Ruff were in the SW corner of Lough Beg, no sign of The Pectoral Sandpipers yet this morning (Richard Hunter)

3 Curlew Sandpipers and a Little Stint are at the Bann Estuary. (Jeff Larkin)

The 2nd winter Glaucous Gull is still at Burger King, Coleraine (John Clarke)

4 Grey Plover, 2 juvenile Curlew Sand's and 4 Wheatear were at Myroe. A dark phase Arctic Skua and a drake Common Scoter were at Magilligan (Theo Campbell / Graham Mitchell)

6 Curlew Sandpiper and 4 Ruff were at RSPB WoW this evening (Daniel Newton)

Glaucous Gull, John Clarke:

Bird News Tuesday 20th September

Five Curlew Sandpipers and five Ruff were at Belfast Lough RSPB WOW reserve this morning. (Daniel Newton).

A Baird's Sandpiper, 3 Curlew Sandpiper and 2 Little Stint were at Blanket Nook in Donegal. (Chris Ingram, Theo Campbell).

At least two of the Pectoral Sandpipers are still in the south west corner of Lough Beg but very skulking. A Curlew Sandpiper is also present. (David Steele, Gerard McGeehan, Shirley Dunlop)

Two Red Kite were feeding in a newly mown field next to the A1 at Rathfriland (Wilton Farrelly)

Two Great White Egrets were at Mullagh, Lough Beg. (Jeff Larkin).

A Yellow-browed Warbler was in trees behind the Manor House on Rathlin. (Ric Else & Hazel Watson).

Two juvenile Peregrines were at Corbet outside Banbridge this afternoon were the predated a Black-headed Gull. (David McCreedy).

A Curlew Sandpiper was at Kinnegar shore. (Paul Hunter)

Thanks to David McCreedy for the pictures of the Peregrines and to Paul Hunter for the picture of the Curlew Sandpiper:





Bird News Monday 19th September

Ten Curlew Sandpipers and four Ruff at Belfast Lough RSPB (Daniel Newton).

The Barmouth this morning had 2 Curlew Sandpipers, a Grey Plover and 2 Mediterranean Gulls. Magilligan had 2 Arctic Skua, a Red-throated Diver, a Mediterranean Gull and 11 Common Scoter. (Garry Armstrong).

A single Curlew Sandpiper is at Portmore. (Michael Latham).

A total of 3 Pectoral Sandpipers are in the southwest corner of Lough Beg. 16 Ruff  and a new Reed Warbler were at Mullagh. (David Steele)

A single Dark Bellied Brent and a Pink-foot was with the Brent flock at Balls Point, Lough Foyle. (Garry Armstrong).

Two Pomarine Skua, an adult and a juvenile, flew south past Copeland. A bird was also seen heading north. (David Stirling, James Crymble, Richard Donaghey).

Three Greenland Wheatear and two White Wagtails were at Kearney. At least 7 Mediterranean Gulls, 4 juveniles, 2 2nd winter and an adult, were among a large flock of gulls in a ploughed field at Kirkiston. (Bob Watts).

Ballykelly had 6 Slavonian Grebe, 5 Red-throated Diver, 2 Goosander, 36 Mediterranean Gulls and a Ruff. (Garry Armstrong).

2 Greenland Wheatear were at Skernaghan Point on Islandmagee. (Ian Enlander).

Small numbers of Common Scoter passed St John's Point along with a strong movement south of Swallows. (Philip Watson).

Thanks to Michael Latham for the picture of the Curlew Sandpiper and to Tim Jess for the picture of the Great Spotted Woodpecker:




Bird News Sunday 18th September

Nine Curlew Sandpipers and eight Ruff remain at Belfast Lough RSPB (Daniel Newton/Ian Enlander).

A ringtail Hen Harrier and juvenile or female Merlin were at Portmore Lough RSPB this morning (Ed O’Hara).

A Common Crane was seen flying south from Templecowey at low level and giving great views (Billy Miskelly).

Negative news on the Pied Flycatcher at Ballquintin Farm (Billy Miskelly).

Six or seven Grey Phalarope from the boat near Portstewart returning from Inishtrahull, also three Bottlenose Dolphins. (Steven Dunbar)

A Kestrel was seen at Downhill (Paula Campbell)

A Marsh Harrier was at Reedy Flats (John Lambe)

Two Hen Harrier and a Curlew Sandpiper were at Portmore (Gerard McGeehan / Shirley Dunlop)

Three White-tailed Eagles were seen in Co Fermanagh today (John Cusack)

Lough Beg had 2 Great White Egrets and a single Ruff. On Saturday 6 Stock Doves were in stubble fields at Carmean between Moneymore and Magherafelt (Godfrey McRoberts)

Grey Phalaropes, Stephen Dunbar:

Snipe, David Clarke:


Bird News Saturday 17th September

Eight Curlew Sandpipers and four Ruff were at Belfast Lough RSPB WOW reserve this morning. (Daniel Newton).

The Osprey was still at the River Derg above Ardstraw, Co. Tyrone, it flew up river towards Crew Bridge. Three Redwings were also present. (Tony McCormick) 

A Pied Flycatcher was at Ballyquintin, in the last sycamore near the farm. It was showing up to 6pm. 11 Mediterranean Gulls were south of Portavogie and 2 Chiffchaffs at Templecowey. A Ruff was in the ploughed field at Kirkiston. 8 Wheatear were between Cloghy and Kearney. A single Whimbrel was at Kearney. (Bob Watts, Wilton Farrelly).

30 Crossbills were near the visitor centre at Davagh Forest. (Dermot Hughes).

A juvenile Long-tailed Skua and an Arctic Skua were at Magilligan. (Stephen Dunbar). Later a juvenile Sabines Gull, 2 Arctic and a Great Skua were present. (Dean Jones).

8 Pinkfeet were at Myroe. (Dean Jones).

4 Twite were at Torr Head. (Michael Latham).

At least 15 Mediterranean Gulls were at Ballykelly including 7 juveniles and 2 colour ringed birds. Yellow AY PL was ringed in Germany and White 3HK7 was ringed in Belgium. A juvenile Wheatear was also seen. (Gareth Platt)

Pied Flycatcher, Wilton Farrelly:

Pied Flycatcher - Daniel Newton

Long-tailed Skua Stephen Dunbar

Long-tailed Skua Stephen Dunbar



Arctic Skua Stephen Riddell 

Red-throated Diver Thomas Campbell

Guillemot - Thomas Campbell

Sandwich Tern - Thomas Campbell

Twite - Michael Latham


Colour Ringed Mediterranean Gull White 3HK7 Gareth Platt

Colour Ringed Mediterranean Gull Yellow AY.PL Gareth Platt


Bird News Friday 15th September

The Chiffchaff ringed at Portstewart Strand on 31st October 2021 is confirmed as a Siberian Chiffchaff by Dr Martin Collinson of the University of Aberdeen after DNA analysis (Richard Donaghy).

Pink-footed Geese were heard flying over Rathlin (Hazel Watson & Ric Else).

A flock of 16 Pink-footed Geese were over the garden at Culcavy (Garry Armstrong). Myroe had a flock of Pink-feet of 33 birds flying over (Gerard McGeehan / Shirley Dunlop). C60 Pink-feet over Ramore (John Clarke).

One Curlew Sandpiper was at Myroe (Tony Dodds & Tom Ennis).

One Curlew Sandpiper at the Bann Estuary (Tony Dodds & Tom Ennis).

Female Hen Harrier at Lough Beg looking towards Church Island from the boardwalk and a Water Rail (Tony Dodds & Tom Ennis). Two Great Egrets at Paddy’s Dub today with 85 Pink-feet in flocks of 67 & 18 yesterday over The Mullagh (David Steele).

Nine Curlew Sandpipers and three Ruff at Belfast Lough RSPB this evening (Daniel Newton).

Thanks to Richard Donaghy for forwarding the photograph of a Manx Shearwater at Portstewart Strand and for his Siberian Chiffchaff photograph from 2021: