Patrick O’Donovan urged the public to “exercise some responsibility” when visiting the Blasket Islands and stay away from the seal population.

Caregivers Brock Montgomery and Claire de Haas said Irish Examiner on Thursday that they routinely saw tourists “peeing or pooing” in the ruins of the first home of the famous Irish storyteller Seanchaí.

The couple, who left the island on Tuesday after starting work there as holiday home caretakers in April, said tourists were also endangering the lives of seals at the island’s famous seal colony.

“We witnessed one man throw a baby seal into the water and then retrieve it and hold it up for a selfie taken by his wife,” Ms de Haas said. Examiner.

“This baby seal later died. It was one of two deaths that we know of.’

The couple were so concerned about what they say is happening on the island that they recently wrote to the OPW to bring the issues to their attention.

Speaking on RTÉ radio, Mr Montgomery explained that seals are mammals.

“They actually live on land, they spend a lot of time in the water, but most of their lives are spent on land. This is their home. Just leave them alone. It’s pretty simple.”

Most people just want to watch the seals, he added.

“But you get one clueless person a day who wants to scare them all and it destroys the other 200 people. If everyone could just work together, they could keep the beautiful things on the island.”

Mr O’Donovan said he had recently visited the island and had spoken to the OPW. He knew that the lack of funds on the island was a problem that the OPW intended to solve. He estimated that they would be in place by the start of the 2023 tourist season.

Multilingual signs will also be installed at the boarding point for boats going to the islands, on the boats and on the island, urging cooperation in wildlife etiquette.

“I am asking people to please police and stay away from them (seals).”

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