Massive walrus spotted in the Inner Hebrides

The walrus was seen on Monday

A walrus has been spotted off Mull in the Inner Hebrides.

Creel fisherman Lorn MacRae came across the Arctic animal hauled out on rocks at the Treshnish Isles on Monday.

The Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust (HWDT), which has been alerted to the sighting, described the walrus as "massive".

In December and early January a walrus nicknamed Thor was seen on the south and east coasts of England, before turning up in Iceland last week.

HWDT, a marine charity that has been monitoring wildlife off Scotland's west coast for more than 25 years, said Monday's sighting was the first record of a walrus on its database.

Sadie Gorvett. of HWDT, said: "It was quite of a shock for Lorn and a surprise for us. It is very unusual."

The education officer said it would be gathering any further reported sightings, but appealed to people to keep their distance and avoid disturbing the animal.

Walruses have been spotted around Scotland before.

A young female dubbed Freya was spotted in Shetland in 2021.

In 2018 a walrus was seen around Orkney, Western Isles and the Highland coast.

Its appearance in the Highlands was understood to be the first time since 1954 a walrus had been seen on the Scottish mainland.

Ms Gorvett said it was not yet known the reason why walruses had been seen more frequently around Scotland in recent years.

She added: "Only with long-term monitoring will we know if it is an anomaly or a trend."