Lough Gill

Year of compilation: 2000

Site description
Lough Gill is situated on the Magharees peninsula in Tralee Bay, on the north coast of County Kerry. It is a very shallow coastal lagoon, with a modified inlet and sluice gate, draining into Tralee Bay. The lagoon is fringed by extensive reedbeds and bordered by dunes, dune grassland and machair on its northern side, while intensive farmland borders most of its southern side. The dune system has been modified by golf-course development. The lagoon is used for fishing and boating.

Key biodiversity
This is an important wintering site for swans Cygnus.

Pressure/threats to key biodiversity
Nutrient pollution of Lough Gill, due to run-off from agriculture and probably forestry, is a serious threat to water and habitat quality. There is increasing pressure on the site from fishing and amenity interests. Recent extraction of sand from the lake has been stopped, for the present. The site lies within a proposed candidate Special Area for Conservation (Tralee Bay and Magherees peninsula, West to Cloghane; area not known).

Protected areas
National High International HighIBA overlaps with Wildfowl Sanctuary (Lough Gill; area not known). 157 ha of IBA covered by Special Protection Area (Lough Gill, 157 ha).

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Important Bird Areas factsheet: Lough Gill. Downloaded from on 20/01/2022.