A new sonar photo has emerged, depicting what one man claims is the legendary Loch Ness Monster. In what is literally the most convincing evidence of Nessie’s existence in the last four minutes, the grainy picture depicts a long ‘serpent-like creature.’ No, really.
The above picture was snapped by boat skipper Marcus Atkinson, who took the shot of the
wavy green line unidentified living monster at a depth of 75ft with a sonar fish-finder device. Atkinson estimates the purported creature is almost 5 feet wide.
Atkinson, who operates – shock! – a tourist boat, recounted the sighting:
“I was dropping customers at Urquhart Castle and then got my boat out of the way of the other tour companies. I moved out into the water and looked at the sonar and saw this image had appeared. The device takes a reading of the depth and what is below the boat every quarter of a second and gradually builds up a picture, so it covered a time of about five minutes.
“The object got bigger and bigger and I thought “bloody hell” and took a picture with my mobile phone. There is nothing that big in the Loch. I was in shock as it looked like a big serpent, it’s amazing. You can’t fake a sonar image. I have never seen anything returned like this on the fish finder. It is a bizarre shape to me. I have shown it to other experienced skippers and none of us know what it was. I have seen a lot of pictures in 21 years of being here but this is the most clearest image yet. Undoubtedly, there is something in the loch.”
Unfortunately for the enthusiastic Atkinson, he’s not convinced everbody. At least one marine biologist has suggested the photo shows nothing more suspect than a strand of algae. Dr Simon Boxall of the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton, says:
‘The picture is built up slowly as the boat moves. So it’s not a snap shot and thus the image is not an image of a single object unless it is very still. The image shows a bloom of algae and zooplankton that would exist on what would be a thermocline. Zooplankton live off this algae and reflect sound signals from echo sounders and fish finders very well. They will appear as a linear “blob” on the screen, just like this. This is a monster made of millions of tiny animals and plants and represents the bulk of life in the Loch.”
The picture taken on Mr Atkinson’s mobile phone of his sonar screen has won him first prize in the Best Nessie Sighting of The Year Award run by bookmakers William Hill.