'How does someone do that?': Dead dolphin vandalised on Dublin beach

'How does someone do that?': Dead dolphin vandalised on Dublin beach

A dolphin with graffiti in Dublin. Picture: MyViewOfIreland/Instagram

The vandalism of a deceased dolphin on a beach in Dublin has been described as sickening.

The dolphin was first recorded as having been washed up in Poolbeg last month but has since been spotted spray painted.

The vandalism was first brought to light after the Instagram page MyViewOfIreland shared a story about it.

The curator of the amateur photography page told the Irish Examiner that he was on the beach on Monday when he noticed the dolphin.

"I didn't think it was a dolphin but I went and had a look. I was surprised to actually see it.

"It was only when I went around the side of it that I saw all the graffiti all over him."

The Dublin-based photographer added that it was sad enough just seeing the dolphin "never mind the graffiti thing".

"That just sickened me, to be honest with you. I was actually floored even the next day. I couldn't get my head around it. How does someone do that?"

Stephanie Levesque, the Strandings Officer at the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG), said the incident was horrible.

"People have absolutely no respect. It's terrible to see that."

Ms Levesque said that the animal was first reported to the IWDG on April 27.

People can report stranded marine animals on the Irish shoreline to the IWDG, which operates a scheme to log dead whales and dolphins on beaches.

When the charity gets a report, trained volunteers are sent to get a photo and a skin sample that is sent to the Natural History Museum. There, the sample is recorded into a database that allows for trends to be monitored and to flag unusual occurrences.

The dolphin before being vandalised. Picture: Aidan Grimes
The dolphin before being vandalised. Picture: Aidan Grimes

Ms Levesque said that in an ideal scenario a deceased whale or dolphin would be left on the beach without people approaching it.

"If it's in an area where it's not in anyone's way, I would recommend to leave it there because it is an important food source for the surrounding ecosystem," she said.

However, on a beach where there are children and dogs, it is better for any dead animals to be removed.

Some animals that wash up on beaches can pose a health threat so people are advised not to approach them, added Ms Levesque.

"They can carry zoonotic disease. So that's diseases that can be transferable to humans. You don't know how that animal died."

If people do come across a dolphin or whale on a beach, they are asked to take a photo from a safe distance and contact the IWDG.

A statement from Dublin City Council said that the dolphin has been removed.

“Our District Parks Officer was also notified. The carcass has now been removed for responsible disposal by DCC staff,” said the statement.

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