A SCOTS photographer has captured amazing images of a curled octopus swimming in the Firth of the Forth in front of the iconic Forth Rail Bridge.
Ditte Solgaard Dunn captured the scenes while out for an evening dip with her children and their friend in South Queensferry, Edinburgh last night.
Incredible pictures show the vibrant red octopus appearing to be washed up on the stony shore after being swept along by the waves.
Further images show the eight-limbed mollusk frolicking in the shallows in front of the Forth Road Bridge after being helped back into sea as the sun sets in the background.
Another stunning image shows the sea creature glowing in the dusky sunlight in front of the Forth Rail Bridge.
Ditte also captured a video showing the octopus slowly moving around on the pebbles before the 43-year-old and her children helped it get back into the sea.
The octopus is shown changing colour from red to an almost translucent coral as it glides along with its tentacles streamlined behind.
Speaking today Ditte said: “The children have been enjoying swimming in the sea in South Queensferry where we live, so I took them down for a swim after dinner.
“The kids love exploring the coastline for sea creatures and we often spot crabs, jellyfish and fish, but this is the first time we’ve seen an octopus.
“Everyone was extremely excited when we spotted the octopus.
“He was sitting at the edge of the water, and for a while we weren’t sure if he was dead or alive, but then we saw his arms moving, which was so exciting.
“For a while we just watched him floating about the water’s edge. At one point he swam a metre or two along the coast and then came back to sit at the edge.
“After a while we decided to try to help him into deeper waters so my son took off his swim shoe and used it to guide him further out.
“The octopus attached itself to his shoe and he was able to gently pull it out. When we left we could still see him bopping about in the water.
Ditte later posted her images and video onto Facebook, writing: “Wow! An evening swim was made hugely exciting when my son discovered an octopus!
“This little guy was sitting at the edge of the water (is that a bad thing? Does anyone know?) and entertained us with his colour-changing swim and by grabbing onto my son’s swim shoe when he was guiding it back into the water.”
The post has collected over 1,000 likes and more than 1,000 comments from shocked viewers.
Janet Sullivan said: “Golly … I think we’ll see the Loch Ness monster next!”
Kai Mckechnie said: “They don’t do good on land as the heat dries them really quick but it looks awesome.”
Peter Linnemann said: “Very unusual to see in shallow water!
“We saw the same species about a mile west on a beach on Hopetoun estate last year.
“Perhaps it was even the same one. Their inquisitive eyes are so amazing.”
And Sally Flynn added: “I’d be calling Deep Sea World in case he has managed to get out.”
Octopuses are now being caught as far north as the Isle of Skye.
More and more octopus and squid are migrating north with warmer temperatures, but are rarely spotted beyond the English channel.