A SMALL minority of staycationers are causing problems for landowners in West Cork.
Lukas Ungerer, owner of Three Castle Head farm on the Mizen Peninsula, confirmed that one disgruntled dog owner actually put dog’s poo in his mailbox.
‘It was, more than likely, someone I called out to and said, “No dogs!” as they were making their way through our fields down to the historic Dunlough Castle.’
The area has had lots of exposure lately as it’s where Sophie Toscan du Plantier visited just hours before her murder.
‘Twice this year,’ he added, ‘I have had to call the guards. Once was in relation to a dog, and the second was in relation to unlawful drone usage,’ said Lukas. ‘The big issue in a lot of places is drone usage because they are very invasive especially for wildlife,’ he added. ‘A lot of drone owners are not aware of the laws to protect people’s privacy, as well as nesting birds and other wildlife.’
‘I believe 99% of staycationers are spot-on, but there’s 1% that feel entitled to do as they please without fully respecting other people’s privacy or property.’ Lukas said the increase in tourism numbers is not particular to Three Castle Head. ‘People with other walks have reported the same disturbances we are experiencing,’ he said. ‘especially dog disturbances. Some people run dogs off the lead which is be prohibited on any farm, especially one like ours where there are sheep. There are many new dog owners since the lockdown began so lots of people are unaware of the restrictions of where you can walk a dog.’
Lukas has appealed to people to show respect for other people’s property and, ideally, leave their dogs at home.