Moray group have a ‘whale of a time’ with Orca encounter

Stuart Grieve - Orca encounter (pic: Stuart Grieve)
Stuart Grieve – Orca encounter (pic: Stuart Grieve)

A DAY OUT on the Moray Firth ended in an incredible encounter for a Moray group when they came into close contact with a pod of killer whales.

The four whales were spotted from the 20-foot pleasure boat ‘Blossom’ belonging to Laim Hill when they were sailing from just off the Bow and Fiddle Rock towards Lossiemouth.

Stuart Grieve was aboard the Blossom with Mr Hill, his girlfriend Rachel Scott and their six-year-old son Cody when they were treated to the stunning sight of four whales in a feeding frenzy just yards from the boat.

It was bad news, however, for the resident seal population who were providing the main dish on the dinner plate for the whales!

Mr Grieve, from Buckie, told a P&J reporter: “We were told someone had spotted whales from the shore and we went out – we went right into the commotion of the birds and the whales going daft.

“We were not sure how they would react – but they were letting us get pretty close. We saw these chunks floating in the water and thought the whales were feeding on squid, but we picked up a chunk out of the water and saw it was the side of a seal.”

Stuart said that the boat sped after the whales before stopping and throwing the piece of seal they had recovered back into the water. “The whale took it – it was not quite hand-feeding, but it is about as close as you can get with a killer whale.

“It was just a great thing to see and was the first time I’ve ever seen them.”

Sightings of killer whales on the east coast are rare – but there have been a number of reported sightings over the last week with 20 whales spotted close to the shore at Fraserburgh.

The Orca Whales are much more common along Scotland’s west coast but have been seen regularly off Caithness and the Orkney Islands at this time of year.

(See dramatic footage of the whales shot by Mr Grieve on the insideMoray Facebook page).