The outlook of day 4 of Orca Watch looked very bleak – lots of thick haar obscured most of the coastline to the point where you could barely see your hand in front of your face. The morning ferry trip was as unfruitful as the previous, with haar closing in all around the boat meaning visibility was less than 50 m. But as ever, the orca watchers are an optimistic bunch and there were a few brave souls stationed on Duncansby Head late morning hoping for the sea to reappear and hopefully with orca in view. Keeping us entertained at the headland was the subalpine warbler, which was still darting around the fence line munching on caterpillars and craneflies. Presence of this little fella draw more crowds to Duncansby, with many keen birders hoping to get a shot of the tail to help definitely identify which subalpine warbler species this visitor was.
With our sightings board looking very empty, we hoped to spot some cetacean activity from the afternoon JOG ferry and with the haar clearing, we all thought we were in with a good chance of at least some porpoise. We had fantastic visibility on the ferry and managed to spot an unidentified dolphin species and some porpoise which was great after a few days with no cetacean sightings close by. No news on the current status of the orca, which was hardly surprising due to the vast amount of haar covering the east coast, however we all keep our fingers crossed as anticipation builds further ahead of the first orca sighting.