Killarney National Park Wildlife
Lily of Killarney Wildlife
The Lakes of Killarney are home to some of the rarest and most ancient species of wildlife in Ireland. On your journey aboard the Lily Of Killarney Watercoach, you will learn about some of the area’s best-known wildlife and if you are lucky even catch a glimpse of the creatures in their natural habitat. Here are just some of the natives which you may come across during the tour….
Lily Marine Life
Lough Leane is one of the deepest Lakes in Ireland, thus making it the perfect playground for many species of freshwater fish including Wild Atlantic Salmon, Brown Trout, Perch and Sea Bream.
Rare breeds include the Killarney Shad which is a sub-breed of Twaite Shad and is a type of small fish which can be found only in Lough Leane in the Killarney National Park. Another rare breed is the Artic Char which is a relict species thought to be left over since the last Ice Age. An extremely rare and sensitive fish, its presence in our waters is thought to be indicative of its pristine environmental condition.
The Red Deer of Killarney are the last surviving indigenous herd of Red Deer left in Ireland and can be seen in large numbers in and around the Killarney National Park. Some members of this breed have made the small island of Innisfallen their home and can often be seen swimming back and forth between the mainland in search of food. Don’t forget to have your camera at the ready for a once in a lifetime photo opportunity!
The Japanese Sika Deer, as the name suggests are not a native breed to Ireland and were thought to be introduced from Japan to Ireland in 1860 and then from Wicklow to Killarney in 1865 when one male and two female Deer where brought to the Muckross estate. Different from the native Red Deer due to their spots and black strip, the Sika Deer are just as prominent throughout the park as their Red Deer counterparts.
For centuries, the White-Tailed Eagle was a regular resident along all Irish Coastlines, however over the years, the species, (which is one of the largest birds of prey in the world), has become more and more rare, largely due to their persecution coupled with the increasing use of pesticides. In 2007, the White-Tailed Eagle Project was launched across parks in Ireland and 15 baby chicks from Norway were re-introduced back into the Killarney National Park in the hopes that someday they would once again call the Park their home. Whilst many of the birds fled to other areas with some as near Co. Cork and others as far as Scotland, the Lakes of Killarney and its surrounding area are now home to a male and female of the White-Tailed Eagle species and can often be seen circling Lough Leane.