In good summers, butterflies are abundant in the garden and can be seen at close quarters on the Buddleia and the warm rocks. Painted Ladies, Clouded Yellows, Red Admirals, Gatekeepers, Common Blues, Meadow Browns and Tortoiseshells are all seen regularly. Wall Browns are common on Cape Clear in good years.
The garden is home to a good population of common birds. Curlews are often seen flying past. The inlet of Crewe Bay (about a quarter of a mile away) is a good place to see Egrets which are often very close to the bridge where a stream runs into the bay. Redshanks and curlews are common and there is a scattering of other wading birds.
Many seabirds can be seen from the shoreline.
Cape Clear is internationally renowned for its birds. More information about the birds that can be seen and accommodation on Cape Clear can be found on the Cape Clear page on this website, or on www.birdwatchireland.ie or via the link below. One can visit Cape Clear for the day but the time on the Island is limited. For those particularly interested in birds, we strongly recommend staying for at least one night on Cape Clear, either at the beginning of the end of your stay in the Lookout.
A seal can often be seen from the footpath running from Schull village past the pier towards the sailing school and open sea. There are many seals in Roaring Water Bay though a boat is required to see them. We have seen porpoises from a boat beyond Long Island but you would need to be lucky. Likewise, on one occasion we saw three Minke Wales from the cliffs at Mizen Head and we have also seen an otter in the sea on one occasion.
Rabbits and the occasional hare and fox can be seen in the garden.
Our meadow has a fair mix of wild flowers with a few early purple orchids which we are trying to encourage. Long Island and Cape Clear are great places for wild flowers as the land has been less intensively farmed than on the mainland. There is quite a lot of natural heather in the garden.