Darragh Island Oileán Darach "Oak Island"

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Grid: J5360

Open to the public (NT).

This island is owned by the National Trust. It boasts one of the richest grasslands in this part of Down. Before 2016 there were 66 botanical records, and more recently I have recorded 35 plant species here. The rare Marsh Fritillary butterfly was recorded here in 1985, and its foodplant Succisa pratensis is abundant in a small area of the Northern drumlin.

The island is grazed by cattle. Ticks are present.

Notable species

September 2021 The view of the northern drumlin from the western bay (looking North), with a dense area of Succisa and some heath.

September 2021 A dense patch of flowering Succisa.

June 2021 A Common Blue butterfly (Polyommatus icarus) on Meadow Vetchling (Lathyrus pratensis). These butterflies are common on the island in summer.

September 2021 Fairy Flax (Linum catharticum), a delicate annual or biennial of species-rich grasslands.