Dopey Dick

By rareAdmin, Friday, 19th December 2014 | 0 comments
Filed under: Misc.

Dopey Dick

In November 1977 at the height of the Troubles, Derry city was visited by a killer whale dubbed 'Dopey Dick' by the thousands who came from miles around to see him.

It is believed the whale entered Lough Foyle, and ultimately the River Foyle, in pursuit of a late run of salmon. For almost a week it enthralled residents and visitors alike. The greeting on everyone's lips was: "Have you seen Dopey Dick today?"

The attached photo shows British Army landing craft with Foyle Fisheries Commission personnel on board in an unsuccessful attempt to herd an ailing killer whale under the Craigavon Bridge in Derry and back up Lough Foyle towards the open sea.

The whale disappeared as mysteriously as it arrived. No carcase was every found so it is assumed it made its way safely back into the North Atlantic. He was nicknamed Dopey Dick because of his initial inability to find his way back to sea.

The attached photo is the copyright of Mr Victor Patterson.