Posted by: mystery_man on October 7th, 2011
Tsunamis and Sky Beasts
By Brent Swancer
On March 11, 2011, a huge earthquake occurred off Tohoku Japan, which in turn unleashed a massive tsunami that battered the Japanese coast. The ensuing devastation left thousands dead or homeless, and damaged the Fukushima nuclear power plant, leading to one of the worst nuclear disasters the world has seen since Chernobyl.
Almost immediately, a steady progression of images of carnage began to spread out to televisions all over the world. We saw the unstoppable wall of water obliterating all in its path, whole towns leveled, houses and ships thrown about like toys in a bathtub, nuclear reactors spewing ominous clouds of smoke, and unthinkable human suffering. Right there before our eyes was nature’s might laid bare in all its terrible splendor for all to look upon with shock and awe.
In the months after this tragic event, the country scrambled to repair the damage and lockdown nuclear reactors that threatened critical meltdown. As the world looked on with horror, a strange pattern of phenomena also began to emerge from the crisis, mostly hidden from the mainstream media eye. Some people were seeing not only the damage wrought by the tsunami, but also something strange that they could not explain.
The days after the Japanese tsunami disaster saw a deluge of various reports of strange, unexplained objects in the skies above the earthquake stricken areas. These reports of unidentified objects understandably caused quite a bit of buzz among UFO enthusiasts, and speculation abounded across the internet of aliens observing or by some estimates even causing the disaster.
However, were these accounts of anomalous flying objects truly caused by aliens, or did they derive from something else entirely? I find myself wondering, could the flood of UFO reports after the tsunami at least in part have its roots in something more cryptozoological in nature? Is there a biological answer to this strange flap of sightings? It seems to me that it is worth considering that perhaps it is not aliens we should be looking at, but rather what has proven to be one of the more bizarre and little discussed types of flying cryptids.
For centuries, reports have surfaced of strange creatures inhabiting the skies above us. Atmospheric beasts, or atmospheric life-forms, as they are often called, are said to be organisms that live their entire lives floating high in the atmosphere undetected by humans. These creatures are most often described as having bodies that are semi-solid, or almost insubstantial, with some reports even claiming that they are able to adjust their density from almost immaterial and invisible to more solid, depending on as yet unknown factors.
The appearance of these atmospheric beasts varies wildly. Accounts have variously described them as amorphous and cloud-like behemoths, finned squid-like creatures, floating jellyfish, translucent, vaporous blobs, amoeba-like organisms, and even dragons. The sizes of atmospheric beasts likewise run the gamut from tiny and bird-like, to gargantuan monsters hundreds of feet long.
Although these enigmatic creatures are said to typically lurk too high in the atmosphere or to be too insubstantial to see with the naked eye, there are instances when one might become observable for some reason. Indeed, sightings of atmospheric beasts, although rare, do pop up from time to time. There has been a substantial amount of reports over the years describing unusual flying monsters that do not fit into the typical mold of thunderbirds or other flying cryptids. These atmospheric life forms have even allegedly been photographed on occasion.
Cloud-like object photographed over Richmond, Virginia.
Strange, dragon-like object allegedly photographed from a plane over Tibet.
Some sort of sky jellyfish.
In addition, the possibility of these denizens of the sky has caused speculation that they may in fact even be the direct cause of many UFO sightings. Large ones, it is hypothesized, could be seen and reported as UFOS. There has even been some conjecture that what appear to be artificial lights reported on some UFOs could in reality be a form of bioluminescence.
The idea of these hypothetical atmospheric life forms as an explanation for at least some UFO reports is not new. The famed cryptozoologist Ivan T. Sanderson himself was fascinated by the idea of giant animals swimming through the air above us, and wrote a good deal about them. Among Sanderson’s various hypotheses and musings concerning atmospheric beasts was the notion that many UFO reports may be in fact attributable to these sky dwelling creatures.
Indeed, when one looks at some of the photos taken of mysterious objects in the sky, it is easy to get a sense that we are perhaps looking at something biological in nature rather than artificial.
Star shaped UFO with multiple appendages in Mexico.
Jellyfish shaped object over Montreal.
Scorpion-like object photographed over Los Angeles by Mr. Jamie O’Brien.
Odd, rippling object over New Zealand.
UFO author Trevor James Constable also noted in his 1975 book The Cosmic Pulse of Life, that the UFO phenomena may well be caused by the presence of some kind of goliath beasts inhabiting the skies. He further speculated that 20th century radar might disturb such creatures, causing them to become more solid and visible to the naked eye, or to drop down to lower altitudes where they would be more readily sighted.
This bit of speculation leads to the interesting notion that these creatures, if they do indeed exist, may perhaps use some sort of navigation system to maintain their bearings and find their way. This is not such a far out possibility, as many known organisms utilize such systems. If such atmospheric organisms did in fact use some sort of navigation system, then they would possibly become disoriented when this system was disrupted, much as sonar does to some whales. If this is the case, then it would in turn lead us directly back to the tsunami disaster in Japan.
The thing is that earthquakes and tsunamis influence more than just the Earth and the seas. When the powerful earthquake hit Japan on March 11, it not only jolted the Earth, but also shook the skies above. When earthquakes and tsunamis occur, they generate surface motion that in turn can trigger waves that can shoot up all the way to one of the highest parts of the upper atmosphere, to what is known as the ionosphere. These events are known as seismotravelling ionospheric disturbances.
Recent research done in Japan has shown that the March 11 earthquake generated the largest such atmospheric disturbance ever recorded. It was an estimated three times more powerful than the next largest, which was recorded during the 2004 Sumatran earthquake. The March 11 disturbance created waves of large amounts of electrically charged particles travelling 720 to 800 kph (450 to 500 mph) that reached up to around 350km (220 miles) above the Earth.
One effect of these disturbances is their ability to disrupt radio and other signals, which is in fact one of the ways scientists use to measure them. If atmospheric beasts do exist high above us, and if in fact they do use some sort of navigation system that can be disrupted by things such as radar, then what might such a large, earthquake induced atmospheric disturbance do to them?
It should be noted that the March 11 Japanese earthquake and tsunami was not the only such disaster to be accompanied by a rash of sightings of strange things in the sky. The second largest such atmospheric disturbance, the Sumatran earthquake and tsunami of 2004, also was accompanied by a large amount of UFO sightings. Is there the possibility that the earthquake induced atmospheric waves deriving from these disasters are somehow disrupting sensitive navigation systems of some sort of atmospheric life-form and thus bringing them down from their typical habitats?
For now we do not know if these creatures exist, so it is hard to say what is going on. One might even marvel at how something as seemingly farfetched as these proposed atmospheric organisms could even fit into our current understanding of biology. Yet the same could have once been said of other unique organisms and ecosystems we have discovered that did not fit into any known model at the time.
There was a time when the idea of thriving organisms in the cold, black, crushing pressure of the deep sea seemed just as weird. Sulphur loving deep sea vent organisms that thrive in an extreme ecosystem almost completely independent of sunlight and photosynthesis seemed at one time just as outlandish and bizarre. Indeed sometimes truth can be as strange as fiction, if not stranger.
At this point, this is of course all speculation, but whenever I read something about the apparent spike in UFO sightings following the March 11 Japanese earthquake and tsunami, I find it interesting to speculate on these possible cryptozoological implications. I cannot help but think that in this case, perhaps we don’t need to look at strange, otherworldly explanations for these phenomena, but rather the strange things that we might find right here on our own planet.
It may be worth looking at the possibility of unknown animals that in this instance lurk not within far away, unexplored forests and swamps, or the remote, murky depths of the lakes and oceans of the world, but rather in the vast skies above our heads right at this very moment.