The play area (climbing frame area, not the woods or swamp) will be temporarily closed for a short period as we are installing a new Play Tower- we apologise for any inconvenience.
For the past few days, Freshwater Lagoon has had a male Shoveler duck (pictured) on its waters. They have a vibrant green/iridescent head (during breeding season) and their very distinctive ‘shovel-shaped’ bill. This strange shape assists them in sifting through the water for plant matter and small insects to eat. There are resident numbers here in Northern Ireland but these are increased by winter migrants in the colder months and they become a more common sight.
Lots of fledglings are starting to make themselves known in the woodland. Young Wrens, Robins and Blue tits are a common sight in the Upper Wood and Swamp areas. Once Robins fledge they are looked after by the male for a few weeks. This is because robins have multiple broods a year, and the female is busy getting ready for the next breeding effort.
Estuary - visible from the Brent Hide and the Limekiln Observatory
Lesser black-black gull 3, Black-headed gull 5, Herring gull 30, Eider duck 17 (1 duckling), Little egret 1, Redshank 1, Common tern 1
Main lake - visible from Sensory garden and Visitor Centre
Mute swan 2, Moorhen 1, Mallard 37, Cormorant 1
Shingle Bank - visible from Sensory garden and Visitor Centre
Black-headed gull 87, Oystercatcher 49, Lesser black-backed gull 1, Greylag goose 2 (6 goslings)
Wadermarsh - visible from Wadermarsh lookout and Brent Hide
Black-headed gull 44, Shelduck 2 (5 ducklings)
Freshwater Lagoon - visible from Brent Hide and Crannóg
Grey heron 1, Mute swan 2, Mallard 5, Moorhen 4, Black-headed gull 11, Tufted duck 1, Gadwall 8, Coot 3, Lesser black-backed gull 2, Sedge warbler, Shoveler 1
Saline Lagoon - visible from Limekiln observatory
Black-headed gull 58, Shelduck 2 (5 ducklings), Wood pigeon 1
Mallard 2 (1 duckling), Black-headed gull 6, Wood pigeon 1, Greylag goose 2 (10 goslings), Mute swan 2
Swallow 2, Shelduck 1, Black-tailed godwit 2, Meadow pipit 4, Blue tit 3
Jackdaw, Chaffinch, Blackbird, Wren, Robin, Bullfinch, Goldcrest, Wood pigeon, Blackcap, Chiffchaff, Magpie, Coal tit, Blue tit