BY JACKIE KEOGH AND EMMA CONNOLLY
RESIDENTS in the seaside village of Ring have confirmed that the carcasses of three dead calves were dumped over the sea wall on three occasions over the last six months. The most recent carcass was discovered this past Sunday and the Department of Agriculture are investigating.
A spokesperson said: ‘Initial indications are that the carcass had been in the water for a considerable time. DNA samples have been taken as part of the investigation.’
Cllr Paul Hayes (SF) raised the issue with Louis Duffy, the Council’s director of services for the environment, at a meeting of the Western Division in Dunmanway on Monday.
Mr Duffy informed the Council members that he would notify the county’s veterinarian officer and see if there is a way of tracing the dead calves back to their owners.
The subject arose during Mr Duffy’s quarterly report to members, which included his brief on animal welfare, namely the collection of stray dogs and horses, as well as water quality in bathing areas.
Cllr Hayes spoke to The Southern Star about this ‘sickening occurrence’ and suggested that whoever is responsible should be challenged by the Council and the local community.
He said ‘fallen animals’ – to give them their correct term – can be collected from a farm for €25 by an authorised knackery, a fee that means the carcasses will be disposed of properly.
‘Whoever has been dumping their dead animals like this shows no sense of decency, or respect, for their environment,’ said Cllr Hayes, ‘and they are also spoiling an area that is enjoyed by fishermen, as well as rowing and water sports enthusiasts.’
The Sinn Féin councillor said the sight of a dead animal on the shoreline is also an insult to the local tidy towns committee that works diligently all year round to enhance the community for everyone.
‘To see their work undermined by idiots like this is frustrating to say the least,’ he said.
Cllr Hayes called on Mr Duffy to see if DNA testing, or any other measure, could be employed to identify where the calves came from.
He confirmed that none of the dead animals were tagged before being dumped into the tide.
Cllr Hayes also called on anyone with information about these carcasses to come forward.
FG Cllr John O’Sullivan was made aware of the most recent animal being dumped after it was posted on a local Facebook page and he immediately contacted the council to have it removed. He said this behaviour was not representative of West Cork farmers and said it was ‘totally irresponsible.’
‘Given the recent storms it might be that whoever dumped the animal, a male Hereford, might not be local and it might have been washed up,’ he said.
Last year, a number of dead calves were found at Dunworley on the Barryroe Peninsula.