Just off the shores of Portobello at Joppa, a sei whale was spotted calmly feeding in Edinburgh. What is more, Edinburgher Ken Thomas managed to capture a magical moment of paddleboarders in a close encounter with the majestic creature, and we’re obsessed.
Sei whales are the third-largest whale species in the world, weighing up to 28 tons and can reach up to 19.5 meters in length (WHAT!). With a lifespan similar to humans, the mammals live up to 70 years. As an internationally protected species, sei whales are under threat of extinction.
As for the sei whale being spotted in Edinburgh, it’s a fairly unusual sight. They tend to live in the deeper waters of the Atlantic Ocean and like to avoid Arctic and Tropical waters. For such a huge animal, the shallow waters of our wee Edinburgh are quite unusual.
Keith Thomas said: He said: “They reckon it has been there for about a week. I went on Friday and Saturday, just briefly, and didn’t see it, but other people did. But the conditions were perfect on Sunday morning. I was there for a couple of hours.
It was doing circuits in front of Inch Keith and it was coming up every five or 15 minutes. This is the first time I’ve seen a sei whale, so I’m really quite excited. There have been sei whales in the Forth before, but it’s not common.”
Let’s hope our whale safely makes it back to the deep waters!