The majesty of the Causeway Coast vies for the birdwatcher's attention with fulmar, black guillemot, eider, turnstone, buzzard, raven, and rare crow like chough. Offshore are the seabird colonies of Rathlin Island (near Ballycastle) and The Skerries (near Portrush). In the Antrim plateau area - red grouse moor, bog and forest provide suitable habitat for a broad range of species.
Within a short distance of The Grange, Coleraine lie ten of Northern Irelands recommended visiting sights for ornithologists. Below are listed a few to start you off.
The peninsula at Portrush Species: on-shore winds bring winter flypasts of cormorant, fulmar and gannet; in autumn strong north-west winds bring flights of Leach's and storm petrels, shag, Manx and sooty shearwaters, plus Arctic, great and pomarine skuas; and Sabine's gulls in autumn. Ramore Head is particularly rewarding from August to October.
Area of Special Scientific Interest 5 miles north of Ballymoney Species: grasshopper warbler.
National Nature Reserve, National Trust Species: buzzard, kestrel, peregrine, sparrowhawk; gannet, occasional black and common guillemots, razorbill; eider duck; chough; purple sandpiper; twite.
Area of Special Scientific Interest, Important Bird Area, Special Protection Area Species: breeding cormorant numbers of European significance.
Area of Special Scientific Interest, National Nature Reserve. Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, Important Bird Area The main bird colonies are in the Kebble National Nature Reserve by the west lighthouse and in the cliffs to the north. The island is reached by boat from Ballycastle. Species: cliff-breeding colonies of fulmar, guillemot, kittiwake, Manx shearwater, puffin, razorbill, shag; peregrine, raven. Access to West Light platform only with RSPB warden.
Signposted off A2 west of Ballycastle Species: breeding buzzard, kestrel, peregrine, sparrowhawk; chough; twite.
National Trust Nature Reserve adjacent to Fair Head Species: eider, fulmar, buzzard.
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