Watching Birds at the Cliffs of Moher: A Birdwatcher’s Paradise

By Aashima

Did you know that one of the best spots in Ireland to view birds is the Cliffs of Moher? 

On Ireland’s west coast, the Cliffs of Moher are a paradise for birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts. 

It hosts major nesting seabird colonies and is one of Ireland’s most important bird-breeding sites. You can see 20 different species of nesting birds at the Cliffs of Moher. 

This area has been designated a Special Protection Area (SPA) for Birds under the EU Birds Directive since 1989.

The 7 Magnificent Birds at the Cliffs of Moher

You can witness up to 30,000 breeding pairs of seabirds at the Cliffs of Moher.

These birds are locally referred to as the Seven Magnificent Birds. From May to August, the Sociable seabirds fill the cliffs with color and sound.

You can see internationally important birds at the Cliffs of Moher, like guillemots, razorbills, and significant numbers of puffins, kittiwakes, and fulmars.

Puffins

Puffins
Image: Cliffsofmoher.ie

One cannot miss the iconic Puffin colony while watching birds at the Cliffs of Moher.

This bird is a member of the Auk family. 

With a staggering count of 1,365 individual adults, Puffins burrow into the cliff’s sides and nest in the grassy hillsides of the Cliffs. 

They spend winters at sea and return to shore for the nesting season from late May to mid-July. They are primarily visible while fishing in the water in May and June.

Guillemot 

Guillemot
Image: Cliffsofmoher.ie

The Cliffs of Moher is the 3rd most significant site in Ireland for Guillemot.

Guillemots are members of the Auk Family.

They spend their lives at sea and only come to land to nest during the breeding season, from March or April to August or September.

Razorbill

Razorbill
Image: Cliffsofmoher.ie

Razorbill birds at the Cliffs of Moher are also members of the Auk Family. These species are also of international importance.

They also come to land during the breeding season, from March or April to August or September.

They are often confused with Guillemots, although they are slightly smaller than them.

Fulmar 

Fulmar
Image: Cliffsofmoher.ie

The Fulmar birds at the Cliffs of Moher are members of the petrel family, although they resemble gulls.  

A combination of their white bodies and the comparative thickness of their heads led to their being nicknamed “the flying milk bottle.” 

Fulmars can be seen all year round and are noticeably soaring on thermals on their stiff winged flight.

Kittiwake

Kittiwake
Image: Cliffsofmoher.ie

The Cliffs of Moher are one of the top two sites in the country for Kittiwake. Kittiwakes spend the winter months far out to sea.

They have elegant gray and white plumage, black-tipped wings, black eyes, and lemon-yellow beaks. 

They are among the first birds to arrive to breed in the spring. They are noisy birds and make messy nests on the upper section of the Great Stack.

Choughs

Choughs
Image: Cliffsofmoher.ie


Chough birds at the Cliffs of Moher are all-black, resembling crows, but they have red legs and a down-curved red beak. 

They are usually seen in pairs but can form larger flocks. The Irish name of these species translates to “red-legged jackdaw.”


Their nests are mostly confined to sea cliffs. They are often seen swooping and diving in the sky with incredible agility.

Peregrine

Peregrine
Image: Cliffsofmoher.ie


The Peregrine Falcon, a majestic bird of prey, is known for its incredible speed. It is one of the fastest creatures on the planet. 

The Peregrine Falcon is a skilled hunter, capturing other birds in high-speed dives called “stoops” at up to 240 mph (386 km/h)

These powerful birds at the Cliffs of Moher breed on the hidden cliff ledges.

FAQ’s 

What bird is on the Cliffs of Moher?

There are 20 different species of nesting birds at the Cliffs of Moher.

You can also see internationally important birds like Guillemots, Razorbills, and significant numbers of Puffins, Kittiwakes, and Fulmars.

Why are Cliffs of Moher bird-watching famous?

Watching Birds at the Cliffs of Moher is famous because it offers a breathtaking spectacle of diverse bird species. 

With over 20 nesting bird varieties, including large seabirds, Guillemots, Razorbills, Fulmars, and Kittiwakes.

The Cliffs of Moher are considered a paradise for birdwatchers. It is an unrivaled experience. 

What is famous about the Cliffs of Moher?

The Cliffs of Moher are famous for a wide range of flora and fauna, including 20 different species of birds.

It is also famous for shopping at the Visitor Center.

What types of birds build their nests and live around the Cliffs of Moher?

The cliffs host major colonies of nesting seabirds, including species like Guillemots, Razorbills, Fulmars, Kittiwakes, and the iconic Puffin. 

Iconic birds like Puffins make their nests and live around the Cliffs of Moher. 

Additionally, you may also spot Herring Gulls, Great Black-backed Gulls, Kestrels, Peregrine Falcons, Shags, and Choughs.

How do you see Puffins at the Cliffs of Moher?

Puffins burrow into the cliff’s sides and make a nest in the grassy hillsides of the Cliffs. 

They are primarily visible while fishing in the water or on a cruise at Cliffs of Moher during May and June.

Can you see puffins in Ireland?

To see puffins, you must head to Ireland’s rugged west coast, the Cliffs of Moher.

The Cliffs of Moher are the best place to see puffins and other birds of international importance.

Featured Image: Cliffsofmoher.ie

Aashima (1)
About the author

Aashima is an avid traveler who seeks out thrills and lives a simple, peaceful life. Bright clear skies are her calling.