BIZARRE NATURAL PHENOMENONS
Added on: 22nd Feb 2015
Also known as mock suns or phantom suns, sundogs are an
atmospheric phenomenon that consists of a pair of bright spots
on either side of the Sun, often co-occurring with a luminous ring.
These are created by the refraction of light from plate-shaped
ice crystals either in high and cold cirrus clouds or,
during very cold weather.
UNDERWATER CROP CIRCLES
First discovered in 1995 off the coast of southern Japan, the
underwater crop circles had been a mystery for a long time. It wasn’t
until 2011 when scientists finally realized that these, up to
7-foot-diameter elaborately patterned circles were created by
a little puffer fish.
GREAT BLUE HOLE
Most people have seen pictures of the Great Blue Hole in Belize,
however few know how it actually came to be. The Great Blue Hole
was originally an inland cave at a time where sea levels were much lower.
But as sea levels began to rise, the cave was flooded. The hole is over
300 meters (almost 1000 feet) across and is 124 meters (400 feet) deep.
CHRISTMAS ISLAND RED CRAB MIGRATION
Measuring up to 12 centimetres (5 inches) wide, the Christmas Island
red crab is a species of land crab endemic to Christmas Island and
the Cocos Islands in the Indian Ocean. Usually, the crabs hide in
burrows in local forests, however, each year they migrate to the coast to
breed. For over a week, local roads turn red as millions of crabs
move to the coast.
Talking about migration, there are several impressive migrations in
the bird kingdom as well. Every March, for example, more than a million
common starlings, medium-sized passerine birds about 20 centimetres
(8 inches) long, start to gather in south western Jutland, Denmark for
their mid-April migration. When the flocks begin to move, they create
a phenomenon locally known as “sort sol“ which translates as
Located in the town of Naica, Mexico, the Cave of the Crystals was
discovered as recently as in 2000 but since then, it has attracted
speleologists and geologists from all over the world. The cave
contains giant selenite crystals some of which measure up to 40 feet
(12 metres) in length. Since the cave is extremely hot with
temperatures reaching up to 58 C (136 F), it is still relatively
unexplored but it is estimated that the crystals have been forming
for over 500,000 years.
SPIDER WEB BLANKETS
You might have seen pictures of some really extensive spider webs
but what happened in Wagga Wagga, Australia a few years ago was
truly an enormous and unique phenomenon. As a consequence of
severe floods, local spiders (as well as people) were forced out of their
homes but the spiders reacted in a way that surprised even
experienced biologists. By joining hundreds of thousands of
spider webs together, they created a gigantic “platform”
that saved them from drowning.
Sometimes also referred to as “the everlasting storm”, the Catatumbo
lightning is a unique atmospheric phenomenon found in the mouth of
the Catatumbo River, Venezuela. Originating from a mass of storm
clouds at a height of more than 5 km (3 miles), the storm occurs for up
to 160 nights a year, 10 hours per day.
GRAND PRISMATIC SPRING
Found in the Yellowstone National Park, the Grand Prismatic Spring is
the largest hot spring in the United States, and the third largest in
the world. Notable for its vivid colours caused by pigmented
bacteria living around the edges of the mineral-rich water, the spring
is approximately 250 by 300 feet (80 by 90 m) in size and 160 feet
(50 metres) deep. It discharges an estimated 560 gallons
(2,100 litres) of 160 °F (70 °C) water per minute.