SPECULATION surrounds the discovery of remains which were found on Dunnet beach shore.
A large object consists of a six to seven foot-long spinal column surrounded by a mass of fawn coloured flesh or blubber that appears to have fur on it.
Upon being presented with images of the discoveries, retired vet Sinclair Manson from Thurso was unsure.
“I had a look at the pictures, and it is not a land mammal, i.e. bovine. I think it looks more like a small cetacean, something like a dolphin perhaps. There is variation in the vertebrae which tends to rule out fish.
TV presenter and historian Ashley Cowie believed the spine could be from a whale.
Research shows rotting whale carcasses posing similar questions in the past.
Washed up on beaches worldwide as a mass of flesh with no bones attached, they can appear radically different from our image of a whale.
Far north countryside ranger Paul Castle said he knew about the remains and though he couldn’t confirm what they were, he believed they could be from a Sowerby beaked whale washed into the bay in late 2016.
“Most of the carcasses never leave the bay due to the nature of the currents and can reappear after months or years.”