Bird News Sunday 19th May

Two summer plumaged Great Northern Divers were displaying at Glenarm. (Ginny McKee)

A Cuckoo was calling this morning at Magilligan (Paula Campbell)

32 Swifts were at Prehen Park, Derry (Christine Cassidy).

A first year Iceland Gull was at the Barmouth this morning then on the sea, Castlerock (John Spottiswood)

Several Whinchats and two Cuckoos were at Capanagh (Daniel Newton).

Thanks to William Smiton for the photo of the Sedge Warbler and to Daniel Newton for the Whinchat.

Bird News Saturday 18th May.

A Wood Warbler was in song Tollymore Forest Park, near Mountain activity centre (Gregory Moorehead)

3 Cuckoo were on Kanes Hill, Carnalbanagh.(Gareth Platt)

There was no sign of the Cattle Egret on Rathlin today. A Tree Pipit was at Kebble (Ric Else). Another Tree Pipit was at Ushet Port, a Common Redpoll and a Pink-footed Goose were also seen (Neal Warnock).

Our thanks to Gareth for this pic of a Cuckoo, to Thomas Campbell for this superb flight shot of a Swallow and to Ric Else for the Cattle Egret shot from yesterday.

Bird News Friday 17th May

The Cattle Egret was seen again on Rathlin, also 7 Crossbill and a Cuckoo. (Ric Else).

Inland ad. Kittiwake in Black headed Gull colony on Lower Erne islands RSPB reserve.(Brad Robson).

Capanagh had plenty of Whinchat and a Cuckoo this evening.(Michael Latham) 

Our thanks to Brad Robson for the Kittwake amongst the Black-headed Gulls and finally to Michael Latham  for the Whinchat. 

Bird News Thursday 16th May

A Cattle Egret was found on Rathlin Island this evening near the Hostel (Ric Else, Hazel Watson et al). This is the first island record. A Marsh Harrier, 4 Crossbills, a Bar-tailed Godwit, a male Ruff and a Black Redstart were also on Rathlin today (Ric Else/Hazel Watson).

Two spotted flycatchers where at the walled garden Scrabo country park today (Harry Byron)

Thanks to Ric and Hazel for the photos from Rathlin.

Bird News Wednesday 15th May

Two Bee-eaters were at Ballyquintin Point this morning (David Thompson).

A Tree Pipit was this morning at The Gobbins. (Kerry Leonard)

A Great Spotted Woodpecker flew across the M1 near junction 10 (Daniel Newton).

A high count of 200 Dunlin and 2 Sanderling and a Knot were at Mill Bay on Rathlin (Ric Else/Hazel Watson).

Unusually, a Dunlin was at Park Lake, Hillsborough (Dougie Gamble).

A Cuckoo was calling at Woodburn Forest (George Stewart).

A Cuckoo and 4 Crossbills were at Foglish Road, Fivemiletown (Colin Bell).

Thanks to Dougie Gamble for the photo of the Dunlin and to Wilfred Swain for the Buzzard.

Bird News Tuesday 14th May

2 Spotted Flycatcher seen this morning along the Newry Canal just north of Carnbane. (Frank Carroll).

Thanks to Christine Cassidy and Lindsay Hodges for the photo of a Great Skua on Rathlin.

Bird News Monday 13th May

A Tree Pipit was at Kinramer, Rathlin Island a Spotted Flycatcher also seen.(Ric Else/ Hazel Watson)

Our thanks to Christine Cassidy for the pic of the Ringed Plover and to David Hunter for the photo of the Magpie 

Bird News Sunday 12th May

 A juv Gull photographed at Millquater Bay Strangford Lough on Friday with a leg ring reading X86A, has been confirmed as a Caspian Gull, the bird was ringed in Germany and it is only the third time ever that a ringed Caspian Gull has been spotted in Northern Ireland, (the first being a bird ringed in Poland) the bird was seen  by Graham McElwaine, our thanks to Gareth Platt for the info.
(As well as the Polish bird there was a ringed Caspian Gull at Ormeau Park in Belfast in 2012. It only came to light from BTO ringing reports and was also published in Irish Birds.)
A Spotted Flycatcher was at the NT The Argory (Karen Elliott)

Several Whinchat and a Cuckoo where seen in the hills above Cushendun.(Michael Latham). A Cuckoo was also heard in the glenwherry valley this morning (Kenny Moore)

Our thanks to  Michael Latham for the Whinchat and to Paul Allen for the Red Kite 

Bird News Saturday 11th May

Two Marsh Harriers were at Portmore Lough RSPB Reserve (Robert Hughes).

A Grey Plover was on Rathlin (Ric Else/Hazel Watson). This appears to be the first documented record on the island since 1961. Five Pink-footed Geese were also seen.

Two Common Sandpipers and three singing Reed Warblers were at Kinnegar Pools (Clive Mellon).

Thanks to Thomas Campbell for the photo of a Whinchat and to Ric Else/Hazel Watson for the Grey Plover.

Bird News Friday 10th May.

2 Common Cuckoo and 6 Whitethroat where at Peatlands Park.(Ed O'Hara)

Murlough Nature Reserve has 2 Cuckoos (Liz McShane)

Whitethroat - Ed O'Hara

Bird News Thursday 9th May

A male Whinchat was at the Ecos Park. (Jeff Larkin)

The Bann Estuary today had 20 Whimbrel, c900 Dunlin, 30 Sanderling, 35+ Ringed Plover, a Common Sandpiper and a Peregrine (Ken Perry \ Hill Dick)

Lesser Redpoll, Dick Glasgow:

Bird News Wednesday 8th May

Yesterday an Osprey was at Leathamstown Reservoir above Lisburn. (Seamus Bracken).

Rathlin today had 3 Whinchats, 2 Spotted Flycatchers and a Cuckoo. Also what may be the first breeding record of Treecreeper on the island. (Ric Else & Hazel Watson).

Thanks to Stan Davidson for the picture of the Eider, to Ric Else for the picture of the Whinchat and to Dick Glasgow for the picture of the Wheatear:

Bird News Tuesday 7th May.

A Spoonbill was at Belfast WOW reserve this afternoon. (Stuart McKee). The bird was last seen at 4:40 but could still be in the area.

Several Garden Warblers where singing in the Crom estate in Fermanagh and a Cuckoo was also heard.(Mark Elliott)

A Grasshopper Warbler and Cuckoo where heard on the Broadwater Canal, Aghalee. (Lee Taylor)

30 Ravens where seen on the Newry Canal towpath this morning.(Fulton Somerville)

The Spoonbill remains at Ardelia Co. Down (Wilf Swain)
Wheatear - Wilfred Swain.

Garden Warbler - Mark Elliott.

Bird News Monday 6th May

The Black-necked Grebe was still at Reedy Flats, Lough Neagh, this morning along with two summer plumaged Ruff among 150 Black-tailed Godwits and 50 Whimbrel. At least 100 Whimbrel were still at Ardmore. (Garry Armstrong)

The Little Gull was still at Castle Espie this morning (Ross McIlwrath)

Three Cuckoo were calling at Lough Fea (Shane McGarvey) Three Cuckoos were also calling last night at Murley Mountain, near Clabby Co Fermanagh. (Colin Bell)

A Whinchat was in the Antrim Hills (Michael Latham)

A Common Sandpiper was at RSPB WoW (Colin Mayes)

The Spoonbill was still in Dundrum Bay, North this evening (Wilf Swain)

Many thanks for all sightings of rare and scarce local birds. You can send details via email  or Twitter @nibirds

Shelduck, Wilf Swain:

Whinchat, Michael Latham:

Common Sandpiper, Colin Mayes:

Spoonbill, Wilf Swain:

Bird News Sunday 5th May

Two Little Terns were on the far shore from the hide at the Bann Estuary this morning (Jeff Larkin).

Thanks to Mervyn Campbell for the picture of the Wheatear, to Wilf Swain for the picture of the Spoonbill, to Alastair McLean for the picture of the Sedge Warbler and to David Hunter for the picture of the Chiffchaff:

Bird News Saturday 4th May

The Glossy Ibis was at the east end of Reedy Flats, Lough Neagh, also present were 100+ Whimbrel, 49 Black-tailed Godwit and 2 Ruff. Ardmore had a flock of 37 Whimbrel at the eastern end and another flock of 45 Whimbrel at the western end. (Garry Armstrong)

Last night the Spoonbill was showing well at Ardilea, Dundrum Bay (Wilf Swain)

The Spoonbill was still present today, at the mouth of the Blackstaff River, 20 Brent Geese are still in Dundrum south inner bay. (David Nixon).

The first Arctic Tern was back at Belfast WOW this morning. (Daniel Newton).

A Cuckoo was in the hills above Cushendun, see picture below, (Michael Latham).

Two Reed Warblers were at Kinnegar Pools with another across the road in the RSPB meadows. (Clive Mellon).

A Red Kite was at Drumlin Road, Donaghcloney. (Paul Allen).

A single Puffin was in the car park beside Glenarm harbour today at around 11.30am. see picture  below. (Adam Ringland).

A Great Spotted Woodpecker and a Common Lizard were at Slieve Gullion today. (John Anderson).
Thanks to Wilf Swain for the pictures of the Spoonbill, to Daniel Newton for the picture of the Arctic Tern, to Thomas Campbell for the pictures of the Sand Martin and the Wheatear, to Michael Latham for the picture of the Cuckoo, to Adam Ringland for the picture of the Puffin and to Paul Allen for the video of the Red Kite:

Bird News Friday 3rd May.

29 Whimbrel where at Killard this morning(Dougie Gamble).  seems to a good spring with sizeable flocks being regularly reported.

The Little Gull was still at Castle Espie. (Ross McIlwrath)

A Grasshopper Warbler was reeling at Cavehill Country Park.(Adam McClure)

Blue Tit incubation sharing.....
Since 1999 studies of breeding tits by Ken Perry in up to 313 nest-boxes located on the Ulster University's campus at Coleraine have annually revealed interesting behaviour, but none as good as today. On opening the front of one box today there were two adult female Blue Tits sitting and incubating side by side. They were clearly sharing incubation of a clutch of thirteen eggs without any apparent aggression and both females had brood patches and were adult birds (Ken Perry and Hill Dick).  
Grey Wagtail - Angus Kennedy.

Wheatear - Wilfred Swain.

Bird News Thursday 2nd May

The Osprey is still present at Corbet Lough outside Banbridge this morning. (David McCreedy).

A Short-eared Owl was at Reedy Flats, it was flushed by a flock of Corvids. The Black-necked Grebe was still showing well in the western bay at the Flats. (Clive Mellon).

At Belfast WOW reserve this morning there were 32 Common Terns, 6 Whimbrel and at least 7 Mediterranean Gulls, with possibly 3 pairs nesting. (Derek Polley).

Swifts are now being widely reported including two flying with House Martins at Mosseley, Newtownabbey last night. (Jim McKeown).

A Red Kite was over Drumlin Road, Donaghcloney this afternoon. (Paul Allen). 

Yesterday a Cuckoo was calling at Douglas Bridge, Co. Tyrone. (Godfrey McRoberts).

Thanks to Paul Allen for the video of the Red Kite, see link below, and to Dick Glasgow for the pictures of the Mistle Thrush and the Kestrels:

Dawn Chorus Event - Whitehead

Mid and East Antrim Council are celebrating International Dawn Chorus Day at Jubilee Woods, Whitehead on Saturday 4th May 6am - 8am. This is a Free event. Meet at Bentra Golf Club - grid ref J46738 92437. This walk is led by Ian Enlander.

Sedge Warbler - Fulton Sommerville

Bird News Wednesday 1st May

Two White Wagtails were at Portstewart Head. (Sean Hickey)

The Little Gull was still at Castle Espie along with at least one Med Gull (Malcolm Ervine / Jonny Clark)

An Osprey was at Corbet Lough at 20.00 hrs this evening (David McCreedy)

The Spoonbill was again at Dundrum North Inner Bay today. 38 Brent Geese were still at South Inner Bay. (David Nixon)

50 Whimbrel were on Lower Lough Erne islands RSPB reserve, Co Fermanagh (Amy Burns).

Little Gull, Jonny Clark:

Whimbrel, Ian Enlander:

Cuckoo, Murlough, Tim Jess:

Great Crested Grebes, Wilf Swain: