Weird & Wonderful Creatures

The Banffshire Coast never ceases to amaze and the nature here continually throws up surprises. We have our permanent residents, but more unusual visitors arrive here from time to time.

Basking sharks caused quite a stir when they were spotted in Gamrie Bay in the summer of 2010, and these powerful fish certainly made a change from the usual sightings of dolphins, whales and porpoises! Other visitors in recent years have included a humpback whale, sperm whales and even killer whales.

We have also had ocean sunfish in Banff Bay. These fish are rarely seen in these parts, and as the heaviest bony fish in the world their visits attract a huge amount of interest. Ocean sunfish are easily recognisable as they are disc-shaped and grow to about two metres long. You won't need to dive underwater to see them as they spend a lot of time close to the surface and their fins pop above the surface.

Jellyfish are a very common sight in our waters, but one particular visitor caused lots of scratching of heads. The crew of a North 58 Sea Adventures boat discovered crystal jellyfish to the east of Pennan - a species that they had never seen before. Once they were identified, some of the jellyfish were carefully collected and taken to Macduff Marine Aquarium where they were included for a while in the jellyfish display.

The experts at the aquarium are always interested to hear about unusual sightings - don't forget to tell them if you spot anything out of the ordinary or pop in with photographs.

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