GARDAI are investigating after a pump-action firearm was found at a pier.
The single-barrel, pump-action firearm with a sawn-off handle was discovered at low tide at Renville Pier in Oranmore, Co Galway.
It was found by a member of the Galway Bay Sailing Club, which is situated near by. A member of the club was at the pier taking images of high silt levels in the harbour when he spotted the weapon on Tuesday afternoon at 2pm.
It is understood that the weapon had been in the water for only a short period, believed to be a number of days. It had first been spotted on Sunday but had been mistaken for a children's toy.
After it was found on Tuesday, gardai were alerted and the weapon was handed in to Oranmore garda station.
A garda spokesperson said it appeared as though the pump-action weapon had been thrown from the pier and became stuck in the mud.
The gun will now be sent away to ballistics experts for further investigation. Officers are now trying to establish if the weapon was legally or illegally held.