Kerry | National Parks & Wildlife Service

Cummeragh River Bog Nature Reserve

Location:
Situated 8 km north-east of Waterville.
GPS:
Latitude: 51.871
Longitude: -10.065
Area (ha.):
45.55

This bog is the most southerly intact lowland blanket bog in Ireland and is of international importance. It is almost completely encircled by the Cummeragh River and tributary. It is in excellent condition and actively growing, has a well developed pattern of hummocks and pools and has a mature and luxuriant vegetation cover. The bog, which is now owned by the National Parks and Wildlife Service, was originally purchased with donations from the Dutch Foundation for the Conservation of Irish Bogs.

Animals and plants of interest:
Curlews nest on the bog. Their long bills are adapted to probing for worms deep in the soft soil of surrounding farmland. The two rivers that border the Nature Reserve contain spawning beds for Sea Trout. There is insufficient lime in bogs for snails to form shells but you can find slugs here, including the spectacular Black Slug.
Established:
1984
Ownership:
State-owned

Derrycunnihy Wood Nature Reserve

Location:
Situated in Killarney valley adjoining and surrounding Killarney National Park
GPS:
Latitude: 51.972
Longitude: -9.593
Area (ha.):
136

Owned by Coillte Teo, this Nature Reserve consists of old native oak woodlands with some patches of bog and lakeshore. It is the best example of a damp-climate oceanic wood with luxuriant growth of mosses and ferns high up in the trees.

Animals and plants of interest:
The wood is grazed by two kinds of deer; all year round by the Japanese Sika Deer introduced in the 19th century and in winter by the native Red Deer from the open hills. This results in a slight Brown line under which many of the palatable leaves and twigs have been eaten, and in lawn-like patches on the ground.
Established:
Ownership:
Property of Coillte Teoranta

Derrymore Island

Location:
Situated in Tralee Bay.
GPS:
Latitude: 52.256
Longitude: -9.828
Area (ha.):
106.07

A compound spit composed of a series of pebble beaches, one of the best spits in Ireland. It supports many rare plant communities mainly of a salt marsh type. 

Animals and plants of interest:
Wigeon and Brent Geese graze the salt marsh on the eastern side of the spit. The white top of the spit is an important high tide roosting area.
Established:
Ownership:
Privately owned

Eirk Bog Nature Reserve

Location:
Situated in the Owenreagh valley, Killarney, 1 km north of Moll's Gap.
GPS:
Latitude: 51.946
Longitude: -9.666
Area (ha.):
16

Part of a very well developed and little disturbed example of an intermediate bog with associated poor fen and blanket bog/wet heath communities. 

Established:
1986
Ownership:
State-owned

Great Skellig Nature Reserve

Location:
Sceilig Mhichil, Co. Kerry. A small precipitous rocky pinnacle rising from the Atlantic Ocean off the Iveragh Peninsula.
GPS:
Latitude: 51.772
Longitude: -10.54
Area (ha.):
22.6
Animals and plants of interest:
It is rated as of international importance for certain seabird species - Manx Shearwaters, Storm Petrels and Puffins. It also provides a good example of typical plant communities of a small and remote marine island.
Established:
1988
Ownership:
State-owned

Little Skellig Nature Reserve

Location:
A small precipitous rocky pinnacle rising from the Atlantic Ocean off the Iveragh Peninsula.
GPS:
Latitude: 51.782
Longitude: -10.509
Area (ha.):
7.8

It is rated as of international importance because of the colonies of Gannets that inhabit the island.

Established:
1988
Ownership:
Privately owned

Lough Nambrackdarrig Nature Reserve

Location:
Situated in the vicinity of Castlemaine Harbour.
GPS:
Latitude: 52.081
Longitude: -9.898
Area (ha.):
3.9
Established:
1988
Ownership:
State-owned

Lough Yganavan Nature Reserve

Location:
Situated in the vicinity of Castlemaine Harbour.
GPS:
Latitude: 52.093
Longitude: -9.892
Area (ha.):
25.3
Animals and plants of interest:
Lough Yganavan Nature Reserve, which covers approximately one quarter of this shallow, low-lying lake, is an important habitat for Ireland's rarest amphibian; the Natterjack Toad. This endangered species has a very limited distribution; its stronghold being a few sandy coastal sites in Co. Kerry. The Natterjack Toad has a distinctive yellow stripe down its back. It runs in short bursts, rather that hopping as a frog would. By day it shelters under stones and at dusk ventures out to feed on insects. The Natterjack Toad hibernates in winter and breeds during the spring and summer.
Established:
1988
Ownership:
State-owned

Mount Brandon Nature Reserve

Location:
Situated on the north-east side of the Dingle Peninsula, consists of part of the Mount Brandon range of mountains and the foothills.
GPS:
Latitude: 52.267
Longitude: -10.24
Area (ha.):
461.75

The sides of Mount Brandon are covered in upland blanket bog which has built up over thousands of years. Upland blanket bogs develop in damp climates where soil becomes waterlogged and the remains of plants, which have died down each winter, are preserved and accumulate in waterlogged, acid conditions. 

Animals and plants of interest:
Choughs feed on ants and other soil invertebrates in short grassland. Ravens often feed on dead sheep and have increased in numbers with overstocking. A variety of grasses, sedges and heathers grow here and these have been used for centuries as pasture for cattle and sheep. In recent years cattle numbers have declined while those of sheep have increased. It was acquired to conserve the mountain blanket bog/heath complex and its famed alpine flora. A herd of small cattle have been bred by crossing Kerry cattle with Scottish Highland cattle in the hope that they will break up many of the Purple Moor Grass clumps and allow heathers and other blanket bog plants to grow again when sheep numbers have been reduced.
Established:
1986
Ownership:
State-owned

Puffin Island Nature Reserve

Location:
Puffin Island is situated off the Iveragh Peninsula.
GPS:
Latitude: 51.837
Longitude: -10.408
Area (ha.):
86.5

Well known for its large colonies of breeding seabirds, it is owned by the State and the Irish Wildbird Conservancy. A marine reserve has been established on the surrounding area of sea and sea shore to ensure the protection of the birds and control activities which might cause disturbance.

Puffin Island Nature Reserve comprises 86.5 hectares, of which 32.73 are State-owned and 53.77 are privately owned.

Established:
Ownership:
Partly State-owned and partly privately owned

Sheheree Bog Nature Reserve

Location:
GPS:
Latitude: 52.04
Longitude: -9.481
Area (ha.):
8.9

This bog is the only raised bog in the Killarney district of Kerry. It has a well-developed lagg or marginal drainage system, a very rare feature in this country. It is the habitat of the plant slender cotton grass protected under the Wildlife Act. The bog is considered to be very valuable for comparative studies with the intermediate and blanket bog of the Killarney and Owenreagh valleys. 

Established:
1990
Ownership:
State-owned

Tearaght Island Nature Reserve

Location:
One of the Blasket group of islands.
GPS:
Latitude: 52.074
Longitude: -10.66
Area (ha.):
46.6

Of international importance because of the large colonies of seabirds it supports. A marine reserve has been established on the surrounding area of sea and seashore to ensure the protection of the birds and control activities that might cause disturbance.

Tearaght Island Nature Reserve is comprised of 46.6 hectares, of which 19.1 are State-owned and 27.5 are privately owned.

Established:
Ownership:
Partly State-owned and partly privately owned

Tralee Bay Nature Reserve

Location:
Situated on the north side of the Dingle Peninsula west of the town of Tralee.
GPS:
Latitude: 52.254
Longitude: -9.805
Area (ha.):
754.53

Of international importance for waterfowl especially the wintering populations of Brent geese that it supports. 

Animals and plants of interest:
Pale-bellied Brent Geese spend form October to April in Ireland feeding on the Eelgrass and green seaweeds on the mudflats, and grazing in nearby fields and saltmarshes when this food is scarce. Birds of the bay include Turnstone, Ringed Plover, Dunlin, Redshank, Bar-tailed Godwit, Golden Plover and Curlew.
Established:
1989
Ownership:
State-owned

Uragh Wood Nature Reserve

Location:
On the south-west shore of Lough Inchiquin, west of Kenmare
GPS:
Latitude: 51.804
Longitude: -9.686
Area (ha.):
87
Animals and plants of interest:
On the shore of Inchquin Lough, lies this small remnant of ancient oakwood. This habitat is now rare in Ireland as most of the woodland has been cleared away. The wood is largely Sessile Oak with some Birch, Willow and Aspen. Unusual plants include Arbutus unedo known as the Strawberry Tree, Birds Nest Orchid, St. Patrick's Cabbage and some rare lichens. The reserve is also home to Badgers, Foxes, Red Squirrels and birds such as the Jay and Long-eared Owl.
Established:
1982
Ownership:
State-owned