OK, I know it's old news, but I want to record for posterity that I'm staking a claim for the best find of 2011. A humpback whale I saw swimming just off the rocks in the village at 9:00 a.m. on New Year's Day.
I know it's not a bird (it's a fish really), but it's f**king rare (I might well have used that word at 9:01 a.m. on 1st January 2011), and blew my mind at the time.
And I know that by rights, I shouldn't have been sober enough to breathe at that time, but I was awake, reeking of booze and staring down my scope when I saw that bushy blow. It surfaced twice, so I got a good view of the dorsal fin, the head and when it dived the last time, of the tail stock. George saw it as well, so I wasn't completely in la-la land, and there were other sightings around that time, including nearby at Stonehaven. Interestingly, it had a deep vertical cut on the anterior part of the dorsal fin, so it ought to be recognisable if anyone else gets a decent view.
So, that's the story (morning glory - I feel a song coming on), and unless I can top that, it's my claim for best find of 2011.
Captain A Haddock