Bird News Monday 31st March.

An ad Kumlien's Gull was at the mouth of the Inver river, Larne Lough.(Neal Warnock) see photo below.

Poyntzpass to Scarva this morning produced 38 species which included 13 Chiffchaff, 4 Willow Warblers, 2 Blackcap, 3 Jay, a Reed Bunting, a Grey Wagtail, 3 Redwing, 2 Bullfinch, 60+ Tree Sparrow & 2 Goldcrest. (Fulton Somerville)

Chiffchaffs and Willow Warblers are now widespread throughout the province, so thank-you to everyone who kindly reported them.

Kumlien's Gull - Neal Warnock.

Chiffchaff - Karl Martin.

Great Crested Grebe - Christine Cunningham.

Blackcap - Fulton Somerville.

Bird News Sunday 30th March

The Spoonbill was still at Castle Espie (James Robinson/Ciaran Burns).

2 Wheatear, male & female, were at Kearney and 3 Red-throated Divers passed north. A winter plumaged Little Gull and 2 Carrion Crows were at Ballyhenry Island north of Portaferry with 3 Great Northern Diver offshore. 3 Slavonian Grebe, 3 Razorbill and 4 Sandwich Tern were off Kirkubbin Yacht Club with another 4 Slavonian Grebe, 2 Great Northern Diver, a Black Throated Diver and a Merlin along the shore north of the Yacht Club. 7 Slavonian Grebe were in Greyabbey Bay south. (Ian Graham).

A Chiffchaff was in Sion Mills, Co. Tyrone. (Brian Hegarty).

A Buzzard was over the summit of Carnmoney Hill this morning. (Jim McKeown).

4 Wheatear, a Sandwich Tern and 14 summer-plumage Golden Plover were at the lagoon at the Groomsport end of Ballymacormick Point and 2 Gannet offshore (Dot Blakely).  

A Chiffchaff was at Kinnegar Pool (William Smiton).

There were 4 Willow Warblers seen and heard today at Derryloiste Bog, Derrytrasna, Co. Armagh. Also a Pink- footed Goose at Closet meadows, Oxford Island. (James O'Neill).

The Pectoral Sandpiper was seen again at Reedy Flats, Lough Neagh. (Bird Guides).

2 Mediterranean Gulls were at Glynn Station in Larne Lough, one bird had a white leg ring, 3eak. (Cameron Moore).

Thanks to today's photographers, John Clarke, Noel Austin, Dick Glasgow, James O'Neill and Cameron Moore.

Kingfisher - John Clarke
Blackcap - Noel Austin
Coal Tit - Dick Glasgow

Red Squirrel - Dick Glasgow
Redshank - James O'Neill
Mediterranean Gull - Cameron Moore

Bird News Saturday 29th March

2 Carrion Crow were on Swan Island in Strangford Lough. (Chris Henry).

In Fermanagh 4 Swallow were at Mill Lough and 15 Sand Martin at Lisnaskea. A Chiffchaff was at Knockninny and a North-eastern Jackdaw at Round O in Enniskillen (Brad Robson).

Seen from the Cairnryan to Belfast ferry at the mouth of Belfast Lough were 2 Common Scoter and a Manx Shearwater. (Ian Enlander).

Murlough Co.Down had.. 2 Wheatear, 4 Chiffchaff , 4 Greenshank, 8 Goldeneye, 1 Little Egret, large flock of Linnets ( 180+ ), 700+ Brent Geese, large flock of Common Scoter offshore.(Gilly Irwin)

NIOC Bird Photographic competition winners for 2014.

Advanced section winner. Swallows - Laurie Campbell. 
Intermediate winner. Stonechats - Stephen Maxwell.
Beginners section. Wren - Dick Glasgow.
Junior section. Robin - Neil McCartney.
Digiscope section. Black-headed Gulls - Noeni Bryars.
Well done to all the section winners.

BTO Nest Record Scheme Training Course

Saturday 19th April
09.30 to 16.00
Lough Neagh Discovery Centre
Learn how to find and monitor birds’ nests safely and responsibly for the Nest Record Scheme. More NRS volunteers are needed in Northern Ireland to gather important data that contributes to bird conservation!
The course involves both a presentation and a practical nest-finding session. The cost is £15. For a booking form and, if required, an NRS registration form please contact:
Stephen Hewitt or

Bird News Friday 28th March

A second year Mediterranean Gull was at Castle Espie this morning (Brian Murphy)

A Water Rail and 6 Grey Wagtail were along the towpath near the Lagan Valley Centre in Lisburn (Garry Wilkinson).

Thanks to James O'Neill for this pic of a Long-tailed Tit. You can see more bird pics at

Bird News Thursday 27th March

A Red Grouse was heard this afternoon at Clabby Mountain, Co Fermanagh. Also a Curlew was singing (Colin Bell)

The Siberian Chiffchaff was at the Kinnego Hide, Oxford Island. (Birdguides)

A Spotted Redshank was at Kinnegar Pool before flying off (Joe Lamont)

7 Long-tailed Duck, 4 Purple Sandpiper and 2 Red-throated Diver were at Greenisland Sea Park (Gerard McGeehan)

Thanks to Tony Donaldson for this pic of a Grey Heron and Dick Glasgow for the Magpie at sunset:

Bird News Wednesday 26th March

A Chiffchaff and 5 Sand Martin were at Lough Shark, Co Armagh (Neil Cartmill)

Lower Lough Erne Islands RSPB reserve Co Fermanagh had a red head Smew, 2 Goosander, a Great Northern Diver, a Kingfisher and a Chiffchaff (Brad Robson)

The Red-necked Grebe was still at Lough Swilly, Farlands Bank , Inch, Co Donegal (Theo Campell & Christine Cassidy)

This morning near Newcastle, from Bloody Bridge car park had 9 Black-throated Divers, 19 Great Northern Divers, 34 Red-throated Divers and small numbers of Fulmar, Common Guillemot, Kittiwake, Razorbill and a single porpoise. (Fulton Somerville)

The female King Eider was at Portnoo, Co Donegal (Christine Cassidy and Theo Campbell)

Kinnegar had a Buzzard, Golden Plover 23 (on shore ), a Gadwall ( in lagoon ), Shoveler 5, Merganser 2, Brent 7,Wigeon 6 and Eider 12 (Gilly Irwin)

A Great Spotted Woodpecker was seen at the wooden bridge, Lagan Meadows. (Matthew Scott)

A pair of Mandarin Duck were on the River Braid at Broughshane yesterday. (Clive Mellon)

Thanks to Christine Cassidy for the pic of the Red-necked Grebe, Stephen Maxwell for the pic of a male Chaffinch, Tony Donaldson for the Little Egret, Dick Glasgow for the Peregrine and Christine Cassidy for the female King Eider:

Bird News Tuesday 25th March.

Two male Wheatears were near Runkerry Head, near Portballintrae today.(Colin Guy)
 A 2nd year Mediterranean gull was at Cockle Island.(R.Weyl)

Milford Reserve Co Armagh had: two Dipper, two Buzzard and a Sparrowhawk.(Peter Guy)

8 Long-tailed Duck where off Seapark,Greenisland.(G.McGeehan)

The Glaucous Gull and Ring-billed Gull were at Portrush East Strand. 21 Purple Sandpipers were at Ramore head. A blackcap was in a garden in Templepatrick, 3 Brambling females in a garden at Aghnaleck. A Peregrine was at the Barmouth and a distant Wheatear. A Great Northern Diver was at Magilligan. (Garry Wilkinson)

3 Bramblings have been visiting a garden off the Brunswick Rd in Bangor for the last week.(Derek Polley) see photo below.

Stonechat - Tom McCreery.

Kingfisher - Cecil Smyth.

Long-tailed Tit - Mark Killops.

Rock Pipit - Karl Martin

Hen Harrier - Dick Glasgow


Bird News Monday 24th March

A Kingfisher was just downstream of the red bridge at Newforge on the River Lagan in Belfast. (Robert Scott).

The escaped Red Crested Pochard was at Oxford Island. (Tom McCreery).

A Little Egret was along the far bank of the Quoile below the Quoile Centre at the first car park. (Tony Donaldson).

Thanks to today's photographers, Tony Donaldson, James O'Neill, Dick Glasgow, Derek Polley and Tom McCreery.

Buzzards - Tony Donaldson 

 Long-tailed Tit - James O'Neill

Goldcrest - Dick Glasgow 

Redpoll - Dick Glasgow 

Sparrowhawk - Dick Glasgow 

Female Brambling - Derek Polley
Red Crested Pochard - Tom McCreery
Little Egret - Tony Donaldson

Bird News Sunday 23rd March

A Laughing Gull was seen at Groomsport this morning (Anthony McGeehan) The bird was looked for this afternoon up until 14.30 but no trace. This is the first bird since the very approachable one in July 2010 at Ballycastle.

The Cattle Egret was on the island at Hillsborough Lake this morning until 8.45 am (Frank Carroll)

In Donegal, 4 Slavonian Grebes were at Shellfield, 2 female Goosanders and a leucistic Redshank at Thorn, Letterkenny and the Red-necked Grebe at Inch (Chris Ingram)

A male Mealy Redpoll was in a garden at Richhill, Co.Armagh. (Andrew Poots)

The drake American Wigeon was seen again at Reedy Flats and two Glossy Ibis flew by (Birdguides)

The Siberian Chiffchaff was seen at the Memorial Tree, Oxford Island (Birdguides)

A first-year Golden Eagle was at the Sperrins. It was watched for two hours over the hills south of Sperrin Junction (Larry Toal)

14 Ruff and 950 Golden Plover were at the Creagh near Toome (Davod Steele)

A Chiffchaff was at Kinnegar waterworks (Karl Hamilton)

3 Brambling and a Siskin were in a garden along Brunswick Road in Bangor.

Thanks to Karl Martin for this pic of a Kestrel, Andrew Poots for the Mealy Redpoll, Dick Glasgow for the Goldfinch and Derek Polley for the male Brambling. You can see more bird pics at

Bird News Saturday 22nd March

The Red-necked Grebe was still at Inch Lough, Co Donegal this morning. Best seen from the viewing platform near the main car park. (Brad Robson).  

A first year Mediterranean gull was at Cloughy. (Richard Weyl).

A Redwing and a female Blackcap were in a garden off South Circular in Belfast (William Smiton). 

Yesterday a first-winter Iceland Gull, 2 Great Northern Diver and seven displaying Red-breasted Merganser were at Killough Bay. (Tim Murphy).

Larne Lough, Islandmagee and Whitehead had 2 Little Egrets, 20 Black-tailed Godwits, 1 Brent Goose, 20 Greylag Geese and the hybrid Snowgoose type, 1Buzzard, 2 Peregrine Falcons, 4 Greenshanks, 5 Black-throated Divers, 2 Red-throated Divers in full summer plumage. (Heather Ferguson, J Whitla, R Hart & F Somerville).

The female King Eider was still showing at Portnoo in Donegal today. (Birdguides).

The Spoonbill was still at Castle Espie. (Adam Middleton).

Thanks to Dick Glasgow, Tom and Zach McCreery, Tony Donaldson, Fulton Somerville and Adam Middleton for today's pictures.

Long-tailed Tit - Dick Glasgow

  Buzzard - Dick Glasgow

Long-tailed Tit - Zach McCreery

Long-tailed Tit - Tom McCreery

Buzzard - Tony Donaldson

 Greylag & Hybrid Snowgoose Type - Fulton Somerville

Shag - Fulton Somerville

Spoonbill - Adam Middleton

Bird News Friday 21st March.

A Siberian Chiffchaff was in the reed bed at Kinnego Bay, Oxford Island.(Birdguides)

A Red Kite seen flying over roundabout at Banbridge/Gilford Rd, junction, Lurgan at 830am this morning.(David McCreedy)

The Brambling reported yesterday from Windsor Ave, Lisburn Rd was seen briefly this morning.(Dave Allen)

A pair of Brambling and a male Blackcap were in a garden along Brunswick Road in Bangor (Derek Polley).
Siberian Chiffchaff - Neil Cartmill. 

Long-tailed Tit - Tony Donaldson.

Sparrowhawk - Robert Booth.