The people of Dingle, Co. Kerry have been paying tribute to local marine celebrity, “Fungie”, as the famous Bottlenose Dolphin has not been seen in the Dingle Peninsula for almost a week.
Search and rescue teams have been searching the waters around the west coast of Kerry for six days now, with mounting concerns that Fungie may never be seen in the waters around Dingle again. Concerns were raised almost a week ago, when the “Dingle Dolphin”, who has been living in close contact with humans in the Dingle Peninsula since 1983.
Since then, Fungie has become a legend in Co. Kerry, and has become a national icon, as it is unusual for a wild marine mammal to stay in a relatively small area for so many years. While it is not known exactly what age the dolphin is, estimates provide that Fungie is probably in middle age, at roughly 40 to 50 years old.
While Bottlenose dolphins can live to ages of 60 years or more, worries are mounting that Dingle’s adored friend may have passed away. More optimistic locals believe that the dolphin may have simply moved on and has left the Dingle Peninsula, after a 37 year residency.
Locals are said to be devastated and very emotional, as the possibility grows that their dolphin friend may never be seen again in the area.
Search and rescue teams continue their search for Fungie, and the investigation is ongoing.