Unexplained natural phenomena

There are phenomena that exist that even science recognizes, but have so far been unable to fully explain.

Ignis fatuus and Ball lighting

The will-o’-the-wisp, ghost lights, spook lights, fairy lights, light men, pixy light, chir batti, luz mala, min min lights, irrbloss… The ignis fatuus phenomenon has many names throughout the world. An eerie light seen at night usually over wet areas such as marches, bogs and around lakes.

Spook lights

The phenomenon has been explained to be either the oxidation of various compounds, such as phosphine, diphosphane, methane and carbon dioxide, that may ignite upon contact with oxygen. Chemiluminescence from chemical reactions and bioluminescence from some honey fungus or fireflies are also factors that have been suggested as possible explanations.
Yet, no one can still say with 100% certainty that all ignis fatuus can be explained using these theories.

Ball lightning is another occurrence that appears as a more powerful version of the will-o’-the-wisps, but unlike those it seems to be an atmospherical/ electric phenomenon.
There are plenty of theories about the causes of ball lightning, but so far there has not been a conclusive answer.
The ball lightning appears as an independent luminous sphere that moves around as of its own accord. Sometimes it is said to move through solid objects such as wood or metal, and at other times it burns the wood and melts the metal.
Ball lightning has been seen entering a building through one door and exiting through another. It has passed through window glass, leaving a hole 2 inches in diameter.

A 19th-century depiction of ball lightning

Sometimes the ball disappears without a sound, other times it causes complete mayhem as it explodes with incredible force.
The size of the ball varies from 1-100 cm. (Half an inch – 3.3 feet). They seem to come in just about any color, but red, yellow and white seems to be most common, and they are generally spherical or pear-shaped with fuzzy edges. Sometimes it has a tail, other times it’s surrounded by electrical sparks.
Odors like burning sulphur and ozone have been smelled in relation to ball lightning.
The theories trying to explain ball lightning are so widespread within the field of science. All of them too complicated for a lowly hedgehog to grasp… Or what do you say to the microwave cavity hypothesis, the nanobattery hypothesis, the buoyant plasma hypothesis, the black hole hypothesis…
If you want to know more, check out the wiki page.

Jordkast/ Cookie cutter phenomenon

Another phenomenon that remains unexplained but real is that of  jordkast, which in English has been referred to as the cookie cutter phenomenon.
This type of event is most common, as far as a phenomena that occurs once in many years, even decades, can be referred to as common, in Scandinavia and the Baltic countries, but I know there have been at least a few occurrence in the U.S. and elsewhere.
What happens is that, mostly in winter times, a chunk of soil, often weighing several tons, is neatly cut out of the earth and placed a few yards away. Left behind is a shallow “grave” with precise and straight edges. Like a giant stopped by and just cut out a piece of soil and moved it, just for fun.
In the olden days, the jordkast/ cookie cutter phenomenon was more known and even appeared in old dictionaries. Nowadays most people have never heard of them, even though they still happen. Especially the island of Andøy in Norway seems to be getting more than its fair share.
In the Swedish province of Värmland a well documented case occurred in 1903. Two forest workers were crossing a field when they discovered two chunks of soil having been dumped on the ground. The hole in the ground left behind by the chunks of soil was 4.2 meters (13.8 feet) long, 1.4 meters (4.6 feet) wide and 0.5 meters (1.7 feet) deep. The weight of the cut out soil was 4400 kg (9700 lbs).
Though there were no witnesses to the actual phenomenon at the time it took place, a woman, Augusta Olsdotter, living nearby reported hearing a swooshing sound and another woman had seen a ball lightning!

In a dictionary from 1904 one can read about the soil tossing phenomenon.

In this old dictionary from 1904 we can read that this strange happening has been documented for at least 300 years. Back then the cause of the cookie cutter phenomenon was thought to be an unusual form of electrical discharge in the atmosphere, a lightning strike of sorts (Ball lightning?). And to this day we are not that much wiser…
The theories today seem to be revolving around lightning and frost. In my mind I’m also leaning towards something in the earth’s magnetic field, like crossing leylines or something. Possibly this is the same force that creates crop circles in other areas.
Two unexplained phenomena that might have something to do with each other, even though they seem so vastly different.

Read more about the cookie cutter phenomenon at Phantoms and Monsters.

Toad in the hole

A large geode is cut open. The inside is hollow and through some inexplicable freak of nature a living toad is found inside.
This has been happening on many occasions. About 210 cases of entombed animals have been described since the 15th century.
Most often they are frogs or toads, but lizards and even an occasional turtle have been found encapsulated in solid rock, coal or wood.
How did they get there? How long have they been there? How did they survive?

Toad in a hole

This phenomenon raises a lot of questions. Questions that sadly science won’t even attempt to answer. For some reason this occurrence  has been dismissed by the scientific community. In a  very, in my opinion, unscientific way they are content accepting the idea that a toad happened to be hopping about as the geode was cut and by chance it landed in or near the stone, making the “uneducated” stone worker jump to the conclusion that the toad came from the stone…
Really science? That seems more plausible to you? So plausible that you won’t even research this phenomenon? And this is what happened on every occasion? Even the ones where the hole in the geode is shaped exactly like the toad? Sound a tad dogmatic to me…

I even had a strange toad encounter myself. Granted, I didn’t find the toad inside solid rock, but I did find it about 70 cm down in untouched, packed soil that had been a lawn for years and years. There I was digging when I came upon a tiny hollow in the soil. Inside was a living toad, happily resting. It was fully grown and seemed to be as round and healthy as any “normal” toad. I put him in my pond for a refreshing evening swim before I sent him on his way.
Read about many interesting toad in the stone cases at Paranormal Phenomena at About.com.

Many many more

Of course there are lots of other natural phenomena that science still cannot completely comprehend.
Like the Bermuda triangle and other areas that seem to affect ships and planes so adversely that they disappear.
The unexplained hums and sky sounds reported from all over the world.
Evidence that people in the past may have been way more advanced than we have been giving them credit for. Read about these puzzling artifacts.
Did a race of humans exist side by side with the dinosaurs? Certain findings seem to suggest so. Read more here.
The Piri Reis map. A map depicting another era. An era when humans weren’t supposed to know how to navigate in the Southern hemisphere.
The crystal skulls. Who made them? How did they make them and when were they made?
Atlantis, Lemuria and Mu. The lost civilizations.

Well, if I don’t stop now I don’t know if I ever will be able to!
Tomorrow I will visit with the lake monsters!
See you next time!

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