Belfast Harbour Reserve

The lagoon was formed when an area of the south shore of Belfast Lough was enclosed and infilled with mud dredged from the Lough.  Before this process was complete, rainwater formed a freshwater lagoon, which began to draw in large numbers of birds.  Through the Belfast Harbour Forum, agreement was reached to preserve the area.  The management of the 13-hectare site was entrusted to the RSPB, and the reserve officially opened in 1999.

What is there to see?

Over 180 species of birds have been recorded on the site.  Waders, including black-tailed godwit, redshank, lapwing, dunlin and snipe. Ducks, including teal, shelduck and wigeon.  Water birds, including water rail, heron, various gulls (including rarities) and, in the summer nesting terns.

When is the best time to visit?

Autumn and spring for migrating birds, but there are birds to see at any time of the year.

Who looks after it?

The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds

Where can you get more information?

From the RSPB