Two seals’ heads nailed to Dingle Wildlife and Seal Sanctuary entrance

Dingle Wildlife and Seal Sanctuary in Co Kerry

A gruesome discovery outside the main entrance to the Dingle Wildlife and Seal Sanctuary in Co Kerry Thursday morning has triggered a gardai (police) investigation. A passerby notified authorities when he saw two seals’ heads nailed to plaques outside the main gate of the sanctuary.

The Irish Times reports on the upsetting find. The heads of two common harbor seals, who are estimated to be six months old, were nailed to boards that bore the phrases “RIP Cull” and “RIP - I am Hungry” in red paint that resembled blood.

“It was sickening,” said Ally McMillan, animal manager at the Sanctuary.

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

While the matter is still under investigation, authorities fear it may have been done by people who want the sanctuary to close and believe seals are destroying the local fishing waters.

Eco tours and cruises to spot seals, whales and the country’s most famous dolphin Fungie are a popular draw for visitors to Dingle Bay.

The heads and plaques have since been removed as the investigation is continuing.