We drove over to Sanna yesterday to inspect the whale which Sue Cheadle had reported as washed up on one of the white sand beaches - see yesterday's blog. We found it at the north end, near the Sanna burn, lying just above the high-tide line surrounded by an appreciative crowd of gulls.
The suggestion that it's been subject to some sort of attack while at sea seems a strong possibility as the head is almost completely severed from the body, and the flesh from the dorsal fin to the tail is missing. At present it doesn't smell, but the local Coastguard has been informed and, hopefully, they'll think about removing it.
A look at its skull suggests it's probably a minke whale, and the baleen plates that enable it to filter the water for food are clearly visible.
The whale isn't the only thing that's stranded along Sanna's sands: there are also a couple of these lion's mane jellyfish. Each year, we see some jellyfish but this year hasn't brought many. There was a short period earlier in the summer when shoals of moon jellyfish were to be seen in the Sound, along with some lion's manes, but they disappeared.
After we'd walked along the beaches, we set off across the hills to the north of the township for the north coast. As we approached the cliff line, we saw four hoodies and a couple of ravens, often a sign that something dead is providing them with a meal.
Sure enough, when we looked over the cliff edge to the rocky bay below we saw this dead sheep. While it's most likely to have fallen over the cliff, it may have been washed up during one of the recent spring tides.