Tangled humpback whale is rescued by divers in Highland loch

Humpback whales are being spotted here more often. Picture: AP
Humpback whales are being spotted here more often. Picture: AP
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A humpback whale that got tangled in prawn fishing gear in a Highland loch, has ­successfully returned to the open sea after a rescue operation.

The 40ft whale was caught up in creels in Loch Eriboll near Durness, Sutherland, last weekend, after following herring. Members of British Divers Marine Life Rescue spent five hours cutting ropes that had wrapped around the whale’s body and snout, preventing it from feeding.

Operations manager Stephen Marsh said there had been no further sightings of the giant mammal and a length of line that remained around its tail was likely to have fallen off at sea. He said: “Thankfully we’ve have had no further reports in Loch Eriboll.

“The whale will have gone off to deeper waters, maybe to Orkney, where it may have been one of a couple seen recently.

“The rescue was a success. This whale was reported to us early on, and the line wasn’t yet cutting in to it.

“The lines that were left around the tail were short and non-threatening.”