Seal heads left stuck on sign

Thu, Jun 7, 2012, 01:00

Gardaí are investigating after the heads of two young seals were mounted and stuck to the sign of a seal sanctuary.

The discovery was made by staff at Dingle Wildlife and Seal Sanctuary in Co Kerry shortly before 9am.

Ally McMillan, animal manager, said the freshly cut seal heads had been nailed to a piece of wood, which was drilled to the sanctuary’s sign.

Red paint, which resembled blood, was used to scrawl the words: “RIP Cull.”

“It was sickening,” said Ms McMillan.

“We were very worried because we have two seals here at the moment that are about ready to be released, but it wasn’t them.”

Gardaí in the fishing port town have removed the heads and signs as part of their investigation.

It is feared they were targeted by people who want the sanctuary to close and who believe seals are destroying the local fishing waters.

Dingle Bay is also famous for its eco tours and cruises to spot seals, whales and the country’s most famous dolphin Fungie.

The two dead common harbour seals are believed to be about six months old.

The alarm the raised by a man from the area passing the site who called the volunteers and said there was something on the sign.

Ms McMillan believes the seals were shot, but added there were no wounds on their heads besides the nails.

She said she is not opposed to the culling of seals when carried out humanely.