Bird News Sunday 30th April

A Dotterel is at Myroe Levels (Neal Warnock)

A Tree Pipit was on Rathlin Island (Ric Else / Hazel Watson)

Fanad Head had a female Lapland Bunting, 23 White Wagtails, 32 Whimbrel, 20+ Greenland Wheatears and 40+ Long-tailed Ducks in summer plumage (Wilton Farrelly)

The Long-Billed Dowitcher was still showing at The Quoile this morning. The Drake Ring-necked Duck was also present. (Philip West \ Tony Donaldson \ Cecil Smyth)

An Arctic Tern was at RSPB WOW along with 50 Common Tern and an adult Ring-Billed Gull. The first summer Little Gull was also present (Daniel Newton)

A Wheatear (Greenland race) and Reed Warbler were at Copeland Bird Observatory this morning. (CBO) The third Redstart of the weekend was also seen later on.

Three dark bellied Brent, a Sanderling and 10 Dunlin were at Kinnegar shore (Stuart McKee / Daniel Newton)

A Greenland Wheatear was at Fairhead (Ronald Surgenor)

A Cuckoo was at Kinramer, Rathlin Island this evening (Richard Else)

A Swift was over Boucher Road, Belfast (Gerard McGeehan) 

Thanks to Neal Warnock and Cecil Smyth for todays pics. You can see other bird pics at :

Long-billed Dowitcher, Cecil Smyth:

Dotterel, Neal Warnock:

Long-billed Dowitcher, Tony Donaldson:

Bird News Saturday 29th April

The Little Gull & adult Ring-billed Gull were still present at RSPB WoW along with 4 Common Terns, 3 Mediterranean Gulls, & a pair of Gadwall. A Reed Warbler was also near the Hide 2 along the track (Kevin Kirkham)

The Long-billed Dowitcher is showing at the Quoile from the Castle Island Hide (Daniel Newton / Garry Armstrong)

2 Redstarts, a male and a female, a Sedge Warbler, 14 Willow Warbler, a Chiffchaff and 5 Wheatear were on Copeland Island this morning (CBO)

The drake Ring-necked Duck was seen again at the yacht club end of The Quoile (Garry Armstrong)

A pair of Twite were feeding along the front at Ballycastle, close to the Shorebird Cafe (Clive Mellon).

A Grasshopper Warbler heard this afternoon at Stoneyford, in the meadows marsh area to right of lake just before houses in the village. (Noeni Bryars & Suzanne Belshaw).

A Great-spotted Woodpecker was at Brackagh Bog, Portadown. (Steven Fyffe).

The dark bellied Brent Goose was at Killough. At Killard were 3 Purple Sandpipers, 2 Wheatear and Whimbrel (Gerard McGeehan, Shirley Dunlop, Carol Gillespie, Ray Bennett)
Thanks to Michael Latham for the picture of the Belfast WoW Little Gull, to Wilf Swain for the picture of the Cuckoo, to Cecil Smyth for the picture of the Black-tailed Godwit and to Linda Thompson for the pictures of the Mediterranean Gull and the Redpoll:


Bird News Friday 28th April

The Long-billed Dowitcher was still off the hide at the Quoile this morning. (Tony Donaldson).
(The bird however has not been seen early afternoon or late evening)

A wing tagged immature White-tailed Eagle was at Camlough Lake this morning, last seen heading away south east. (Joe Devlin).

An Osprey was seen flying north at the north end of Lough Beg at Newferry this morning. ( Gareth Bareham and Laura Smith).

An adult Ring-billed Gull and 1s. Little Gull were still present at RSPB WoW Belfast at 4pm (Daniel Newton)

Cloughfin Port on the Gobbins coast of Islandmagee this morning had 14 Whimbrel  and 1 'Greenland' type Wheatear. (Ian Enlander)

Rathlin Island had... 1 Iceland Gull still here, another Grasshopper Warbler (near the East Light this time), 2 Sandwich Terns, 2 Common Sandpipers, 9 Whimbrels, 23 Black-tailed Godwits.(Richard Else)

A Whimbrel was on the Blackhead coastal path, Whithead this morning. (Christine Beggs)
3 Swift were at Lurgan (Stephen Foster)

8 Whimbrel, 10 Sandwich Tern and a Common Sandpiper were at Belfast Harbour Lagoon (Dot Blakely)

Bann Estuary had 1 Little Gull, 22Whimbrel,165 Golden Plover,400 Dunlin,100 Sanderling and a Pergrine.(Hill Dick)

A Great Spotted Woodpecker was at Knockmany Forest, Co. Tyrone (Anon)

20 Common Crossbills were today at Keady Mountain near Limavady before flying high to the west. Also 20+ Greenland- type Wheatears. (David Steele)

Thanks to Tony Donaldson for the picture of the Long-billed Dowitcher and to Christine Beggs for the picture of the Whimbrel.

Bird News Thursday 27th April

The Long-billed Dowitcher is still off the hide at the Quoile this morning, see pictures below, the Ring-necked Duck and Ruff were also still present. (Tony Donaldson).

There was no sign of the Avocets at RSPB Belfast Lough reserve up to 12.30. A Ring-billed Gull, 3 Mediterranean Gulls, the Little Gull and a Common Sandpiper were present, a Swift also flew through. (Derek Polley/Ian Enlander).

A singing Reed Warbler was at Kinnegar, a Common Sandpiper was also present. (Ian Enlander).

There were approx. 1500 Dunlin, Ringed Plover and Sanderling on the beach at Magilligan Point this morning. Also small numbers of Whimbrel at Ball's Point and Ballykelly Bank. (David Hill).

On Rathlin today the first Grasshopper Warbler of the year was singing near the harbour. The Iceland Gull was still present. Also present were 70 Black-tailed Godwits (mostly on Ushet Lough), 1 Greenshank, 1 Common Sandpiper. A flock of 10 White Wagtails by Ushet Lough. 3 Redwings were still at Kinramer. (Ric Else & Hazel Watson).

On Tuesday an Osprey was seen in flight over Glenarm Forest. (Geraldine Seymour).

Thanks to Tony Donaldson for the pictures of the Long-billed Dowitcher, to David Hill for the pictures of the White Wagtail and the Dunlin, to Linda Thompson for the picture of the Wheatear and to Geraldine Seymour for the picture of the Osprey.



Long-billed Dowitcher Pictures

Thanks to Stephen Maxwell and Ronald Surgenor for these pictures of our rare visitor. The first three pictures are from Stephen and the second three from Ronald.

Bird News Wednesday 26th April

The Long-billed Dowitcher is still present this morning at the Quoile, the bird is to the left of the hide. A male Ruff is also present (Tom Ennis, Tony Dodds, John Edwards). The bird was still present around 1pm, along with the drake Ring-necked Duck (Tony Donaldson)

The two Avocets were still at Belfast RSPB WoW this morning (Daniel Newton). The Avocets were still present at 12:30 along with an adult Ring-billed Gull (Stuart McKee)

A drake Ring-necked Duck was at Blanketnook, Co Donegal (Michael Savage).

A Barn Owl flew over a garden near Annahilt outside Lisburn this evening. (Garry Wilkinson)

A darkbellied Brent Goose was on Rathlin (Ric Else)


Alisa Craig Trip:
Weather permitting there will be another trip to Ailsa Craig. This will leave Cushendall Harbour at 10.30am next Monday, May 1st. Contact Jim Wells on 07856235144 for further details.

Thanks to Tony Donaldson for the pictures of the Dowitcher and the Ring-necked Duck, to Ronald Surgenor for the picture of the Grasshopper Warbler and to Wilf Swain for the picture of the Wheatear.


Long-billed Dowitcher

A presumed Long-billed Dowitcher was seen from the Castle Island Hide, Quoile on Monday. (Tony Donaldson)


Bird News Tuesday 25th April

The Avocets were still at RSPB WOW. (Ronald Surgenor) They were still there at lunchtime (George Gordon/Graham Day) And was still present up to 7.30 at least. (Graham Moorhead).

2 adult Ring-billed Gulls and an Iceland Gull were on RSPB WoW reserve (Daniel Newton)

The Little Gull and a Common Sandpiper were at RSPB WoW (George Gordon).

This morning 44 Black-tailed Godwit were on passage in Upper Lough Erne, near Lisnaskea. Also present were a male Wheatear and 8 Whimbrel. (Sarah McCaffrey).

Yesterday 50 Whimbrel were at Ballykelly Bank. (David Hill).

A Little Egret was at Whitehouse Lagoon. (Jim McKeown).

A Brent Goose was at Cruninish Island, Lower Lough Erne (Andrew Gallagher).

A Swift flew north at Slaght near Ballymena this evening. (David Steele).

4 Whimbrel were in the Island Taggart area of Strangford Lough. (Terry Hanna) 

Thanks to Ronald Surgenor for the first Avocet picture and the pictures of the Common Sandpiper and the Little Gull, to Stephen Maxwell for the second picture of the Avocet and to Terry Hanna for the picture of the Whimbrel.


Bird News Monday 24th April

The two Avocets were still present this morning at RSPB WOW, Belfast. An Iceland Gull was also at Kinnegar shore (Daniel Newton)

Two adult summer plumaged Ring billed Gulls, a  first summer Little Gull, ten adult summer Mediterranean Gulls on the big island and the two Avocets were present late morning (Stuart McKee).

A Swift was over the Bog Meadows in Belfast this morning. (Garry Wilkinson).

A Yellowhammer was in a garden in Portstewart this morning. (Rod Gillan).

Thanks to Cecil Smyth for the first picture of the Avocets and the Greenfinch and to Stephen Maxwell for the second Avocet picture.



2 Avocets are currently at RSPB WOW Belfast (Michael Latham)

Both birds still present 19.00 (Derek Polley)

A few people observed the birds mating tonight.

Stephen Maxwell.

Bird News Sunday 23rd April

Please see the separate post about the Avocets in Belfast.

Late news for yesterday was that a Ring-billed Gull was at The Round-O, Enniskillen. However this bird was in adult breeding plumage and it is a possibility that it is a different bird to that which wintered (Brad Robson)

This morning two Common Sandpipers are at Kinnegar and Reed Warblers are singing (Daniel Newton)

The drake Ring-necked Duck was still present at the Quoile pondage (Ian Graham)

A 1st summer Little Gull was at Belfast Wow Reserve (Jeff Larkin)

Whimbrels  are being widely reported from all over the province, thanks to everyone for the info.

Lough Beg this morning was fairly quiet but had 40 White Wagtails, two Greenland Wheatears, 1200 Black-tailed Godwits and three male Ruff. (David Steele)

A female Garganey at Portavoe Reservoir.(Richard Weyl)

A Sedge Warbler and 2 Common Sandpipers were at Castle Island today (Chris Henry)

The 3rd year Iceland Gull was at Ushet Lough, Rathlin. At least 40 Wheatears were on the southern arm of the island, many showing the characteristics of the Greenland race. Willow Warblers were everywhere. Also seen was a Greenland White-fronted Goose, Sedge Warbler,and Blackcap (Colin Guy)

We would like to pass on our sympathies to the family of Julian Greenwood who has died suddenly today.

Wheatear  - Christine Cassidy.

Little Grebe - John Moore.

Alisa Craig Boat Trip

There are two seats available for a boat trip tomorrow to Ailsa Craig. Please contact Jim Wells on 07856235144 for details.

Bird News Saturday 22nd April

2 Common Sandpiper, 9 Whimbrel, a Stock Dove and a Common Tern, were at Rockport / Seahill / north Down coastal path (Ronald Surgenor).

Two Reed Warblers were singing at Kinnegar Pools (Daniel Newton)

Belfast Lough RSPB reserve had 3 Mediterranean Gulls and a White Wagtail. The rough ground beside the reserve had 9 Wheatear. (Garry Armstrong)

Grasshopper Warblers are being widely reported today.  This morning Birds were reeling at the north edge of Stoneyford Reservoir and another in marsh east edge of Slievenacloy Hill. (Dougie Gamble). Another was at the Tildarg area nr Ballyclare (Ian Enlander).

A Great Northern Diver, nearing breeding plumage, was off Drumnagreah this morning (Gavin Ferguson)

24+ Whimbrel, 100+ Sand Martin and 2 Red-throated Divers in summer plumage were at Ballyhornan Bay. (Michael Latham)

The Dark-bellied Brent Goose In mainly juvenile plumage was still in Killough Harbour. 7 Bar-tailed Godwit (one in full summer plumage), 3 Sandwich Tern and 6 Whimbrel were at Kinnegar Shore. A Kingfisher was at Kiltonga (Tom Ennis and Tony Dodds).

A Cuckoo and two Crossbill were at Peatlands Park. (Linda Thompson/Kay Wheeler).

Thanks to Gavin Ferguson for the picture of a Great Northern Diver, to Linda Thompson for the first Cuckoo an Crossbill pictures, to Kay Wheeler for the second Cuckoo and Crossbill pictures and to Christine Cunningham for the picture of the Red-throated Diver:


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Bird News Friday 21st April

3 Whitethroat and 19 Whimbrel were at Kearney on the Outer Ards. A further 7 Whimbrel and a single Wheatear were at Ballywalter beach. (Garry Wilkinson)

Eight Whimbrel were at Magilligan, see picture below. (David Hill).

The Ring-billed Gull was back at the Round O Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh this afternoon (Brad Robson)

Thanks to David Stirling for the pictures of the Wheatear and the Tree Sparrows and to David Hill for the picture of the Whimbrel.