Birding Locations Ireland

Dun Laoghaire Pier

Dun Laoghaire in South County Dublin is a port town and home to Dun Laoghaire Harbour which has passenger ferry services to the UK and also a large sailing marina. It is also popular for shore angling, walking and bird watching. The East pier is quite long and the return walk is 2.6 Kilometres.

Autumn and Winter are the best times to visit for birding. The inner harbour often has Guillemots Razorbills and Great Crested Grebes. Occasional divers visit, including Red Throated and Black Throated. Cormorants and Shags are plentiful, particularly at the rocky shoreline at the start of the pier. This area also has Turnstones, Redshank, Purple Sandpiper, Grey Heron, Rock Pippits, Oystercatchers and Brent Geese. Black Redstarts are also present here most winters. Snow Buntings visit occasionally.

The walk eastwards from the start of the East Pier takes you along the coast to yoor left hand side. There is a large public car park about 3 minutes walk from the pier. This area has large numbers of gulls and if you are patient, you will find Mediterranean Gulls among the flocks of Black Headed Gulls, They are regular visitors here.

The Car Park is located in Scotsman’s Bay.


When you walk out of the car park, walk to your left for about 2 minutes and you can take a ramp down to the rocky shoreline. From here to the start of the pier is where you are likely to see Black Redstarts in Winter. Walk in the opposite direction and the shoreline is where you will find Mediterranean Gulls.

Mediterranean Gull, Dun Laoghaire: Canon 7D MKll, 100 - 400 Lens. 1.4X Ext, 1/2000 Sec, F8, ISO 2000

Cormorant, Dun Laoghaire: Canon 7D MKll, 100 - 400 Lens, 1/2000 Sec, F6, ISO 320

Black Redstart, Dun Laoghaire: Canon 7D MKll, 100 - 400 Lens, 1/1000 Sec, F5.6, ISO 640

Linnet, Dun Laoghaire: Canon 7D MKll, 100 - 400 Lens, 1.4 Ext, 1/800 Sec, F9, ISO 800