I took this photograph of a bird on the west coast of Papa Westray in Orkney last summer. At first I thought it was a Razorbill because of the beak but it was far too large to be a Razorbill. It looked like it was well over two feet high, maybe even two feet six inches. It had a really distinctive white patch on either side of the head and a long sleek body.
If I didn’t know better I might have thought I was seeing a Penguin. It had the body shape of a Guillemot, but when it saw me it dropped over the edge of the rock ledge and appeared to have really short wings and it dived rather than flew.
I’m stumped. I’ve been through both my Collins Bird Guide 2nd Edition and WildGuides Britain’s Birds and can’t find anything which is that large and has the distinctive bill.
I’m wondering if any of my friends recognise it?