Monday, 21 October 2013

Birds at RSPB Portmore Lough Reserve

Eileen and I were sorry we had to leave Broad Water but as we headed for Portmore Lough, we stopped at a place behind a pub at Gauley's Gate where very often there were quite a number of ducks but none was present.  However we did see the Grey Wagtail as well as a Pied Wagtail.  This  is the view for this little jetty as we walked up to the Lough.



 Grey Wagtail


 We arrived at Portmore just in time to have a coffee and speak with the wardens.  This reserve is trying to attract more Lapwings to breed here and so far each year there are more and more breeding.


Viburnum opulus - Guelder Rose

  While we sipped coffee, we watched the beautiful Tree Sparrow
 on the feeder.








Then we headed down the boardwalk to the hide which is on the Lough shore.  In the summer time the meadows are full of wonderful wild flowers and the reeds have lots of Warblers.  The tree in the first part had lots of small birds such as Finches and Tits.


Like the RSPB Reserve in Belfast, they have these ponies on site to keep the meadow right.  In fact this was the first place in Northern Ireland to introduce them and they have bred so well that they now have exported some to other Reserves on the Mainland. 


When we were at the hide we heard Whooper Swans and then saw them flying in to land on the lough.  We discovered later from the wardens that these were to first 3 to come into Northern Ireland this year.  In the previously few days a female Marsh Harrier had been seen, however we didn't see it there.  There were ducks and quite a lot of Mute Swans.


Then back up to the centre where they have a wonderful meadow that we walked around and saw all the small birds.  This pond above would attract Dragonflies in the summer and the whole area would be wonderful for butterflies.  


Wonderful Red Kaffir lilies lite up the whole area.


 
There were quite a number of places for little animals and insects to hide and go to sleep.



 
While I was videoing the Tits and Greenfinch, Eileen was watching another feeder with about 10 Tree Sparrows on it but when I went to video it, they disappeared!  However below you might like to see what I did video with one surprise visitor!


The video can be accessed at

http://youtu.be/xFo7kaFOtcI

If the space below is black, cliick it and the video will appear.


I hope you enjoyed seeing some of the things that Portmore Lough has on the reserve.
Many thanks for visiting. 
Tomorrow, Eileen and I will travel on to another reserve called Oxford Island which is on the shores of Lough Neagh.

36 comments:

  1. I love those 'creature hotels'! And I want my pond to look like that pond!

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    1. HI Christian Glad you liked the creature hotel. Thanks for comment.

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  2. Gorgeous - though I did find myself feeling a bit sorry for the squirrel.

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    1. HI EC Glad you liked the post. Thanks for comment

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  3. What a great reserve and some super photos. Good to see Tree Sparrows are doing well and I love all the mini-beast hotels - wonderful :)

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    1. HI RR Glad you liked the reserve, photos and minni beast hotel. Thanks for comment

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  4. What a beautiful place, Margaret, and so wildlife-friendly. I think that squirrel at the feeder will some day figure out how to steal a bite, but right now he seems flummoxed. That closeup near the end with the tit and the finch was especially nice.

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    1. Hi Kenneth Glad you liked the post. I think you are right about the Squirrel! Thanks for comment

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  5. The Tree Sparrow is my fave, it is superb. I don't get them in my area, I shall have to travel to see them.

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    1. HI Bob Glad you liked the post and tree Sparrows. Thanks for comment

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  6. great post, I kind of felt sorry for mr Squirrel and impressed with the umbrella bowl is this to keep both rain and squirrels away from the feed? We have mimi creature hotels too- (my emails to you are coming back with an error message, I've rechecked the address with the one here to no avail) red berried tree??

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    1. HI Lynn Glad you liked the post. Red berries is of a Guelder rose. Thanks for comment

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  7. Great shots. Love those sleeping arrangements for the animals! :) Lovely sunny photos too!

    Mersad
    Mersad Donko Photography

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    1. Hi Mersad Glad you liked the photos. Thanks for comment

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  8. What a great idea Margaret, this mini-beast hotel. Loved all the photos and the video, as always:)

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    1. HI Denise Glad you liked the mini beast hotel. Thanks for comment

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  9. cute 'hotels'. i like the use of ponies!

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  10. The critter motel was interesting. I was waiting to see what the squirrel would try next. He had that determined look. :)

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    1. HI Linda Glad you liked the critter hotel and squirrel. Thanks for comment

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  11. Hi Margaret!
    Thanks to you, I met a beautiful place.
    This plant with red coral is Viburnum opulus ...
    Your photos are fantastic.
    Sincerely yours :)

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    1. Hi Lucja Glad you enjoyed the post and many thanks for giving me the name of the plant with berried. I have now ammened it on this post now. Thanks for your comments and help

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  12. Those are neat. I really enjoyed your photos.

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    1. Hi Judy Glad you liked the photos. Thanks for comment

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  13. HI Tex Glad you liked the ponies and the mini beast hotel. Thanks for comment

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  14. I love the natural decorations they have put around. And the Tree Sparrow looks SO much like our House Sparrows, or English Sparrows. The berries are gorgeous, so the birds eat them? You did not walk out on that long skinny ledge in the first picture, did you?

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    1. HI Ginny The 'skinny ledge' is a floating jetty and is about 3-4 feet wide. It is used for moored boats to. and only members are allowwed on it. These Sparrows are different from yours and our House Sparrows. They have a chestnut brown head and a black spot at the side of there head. Our House Sparrows (male) have a grey head and no spot but a black bib. Guelder rose

      This native deciduous shrub, Viburnum opulus, bears heavy clusters of glossy berries from November through to March. These are loved by mistle thrushes and bullfinches, in particular. It makes an excellent hedging plant too. Thanks for comments

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  15. What a treat to view your photos. Hope you have a lovely evening.

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    1. HI BL Glad you enjoyed the photos. Thanks for comment.
      .

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  16. The reserve sound to be doing some excellent work with Lapwings and Tree Sparrows Margaret. Lovely pictures of the Tree Sparrow - they aren't so obliging in these parts.

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    1. HI Phil Yes I am pleased what the reserve is doing and making improvements all the time. Glad you liked the Tree Sparrows and thanks for comments

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  17. Always Beautiful photos!
    Nice post..
    Regards
    my new post. Hope you'll enjoyed it..

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    1. Hi Glad you enjoyed the photos. Thanks for comment.

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  18. I always found it funny that the Wagtails are all the wrong colour - piers look grey, greys look yellow and yellows are almost green!

    Stewart M - Melbourne

    PS: Nice tree sparrows!

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    1. Hi Stewart Yes I know what you mean about the colours of these birds. Glad you enjoyed the Tree Sparrows. Thanks for comment.

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  19. Wonderful ideas. I've tried the making home for wildlife in an area of my garden. I've created rock and wood habitats for lizards and birds. It works!!! Really informative post and this place looks like one I'd be visiting often:)

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  20. Hi Chris i am glad you have created areas in your garden to lizards and birds and that it works. Thanks you for your comments and glad you liked the information as well as the photos

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