An investigation is under way after the remains of several lambs were found in a waterway in Co Kerry.

Kerry County Council has said it is seeking any information and assistance from the public in relation to the discovery in the River Blackwater in the south of the county.

Local authority staff were alerted in recent days to the dumping of approximately eight dead lambs in the river, close to the R568 Moll's Gap to Sneem road, a spokesman said.

It is understood gardaí have been alerted.

The local authority's county vet described the dumping of the remains of animals in this way as "absolutely appalling", particularly in a watercourse like the Blackwater, which is home to the freshwater pearl mussel.

"This is a really shocking incident. We have begun an investigation which will include DNA testing of the remains," Paddy Fenton said.

"The lambs are not tagged so we would appeal to anyone who knows anything about this matter to contact us," he added. 

Kerry County Council's Environment Section can be contacted on 066 7162000.