The attention of the online UFO community has been drawn to an image claimed sensationally to show a flying saucer UFO "smoking" as it crashed to Earth over a forest in California.
The alleged incident, which occurred on June 22, 2016, was reported to the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) on June 26 by an unnamed witnessed and filed as Case 77296 in the organization's reporting database.
MUFON is a U.S.-based organization that documents and investigates claimed UFO sightings around the world.
The witness told MUFON that he was on a boat fishing trip with his father on the Yuba River in Dobbins, California, on Wednesday, June 22, when, at about 2 p.m., he began snapping photos of the surrounding forest and canyon."I was on a boat fishing trip with my father," he said. "We were on the North Fork of the Yuba River. On this day at about 5 p.m. (June 22), I took several pictures of the surrounding canyon and forest."
He did not notice any flying craft at the time he was snapping photos of the forest and the canyon. But when he was reviewing the photos after returning home on Thursday, June 23, 2016, he noticed a mysterious object in one of a set of three photos he had snapped in rapid succession.
"While reviewing all the camping photos [after we returned home on June 23], I observed an object in the sky above the treeline in one of the pictures," he wrote in the report to MUFON. "I had taken three pictures within a few seconds of each other. The second picture has the object. The first and third pictures of the same location have no object in them."
The appearance of the mysterious object in only the second photograph suggested to the witness that it had fallen or risen too swiftly to be captured in more than one of three photos snapped "within a few seconds of each other."
"The object looks rectangular and shiny silver or white on one side."The witness insisted there were no visible aircraft in the area at the time he snapped the photos, only birds, such as hawks and vultures.
"In the location where the photo was taken there were no aircraft in the sky and the only birds we had seen were hawks or vultures," he said. "The area we were in is very secluded. There were no other people around, and no noise other than the river going over a rock bed."
Commenting on the incident on his UFO Sightings Daily blog, UFO hunter and conspiracy theorist Scott C. Waring argued that the object was an alien UFO and that it was captured only once because it was moving very fast.
"UFOs often move fast, so fast that the human eye would not be able to notice it," he wrote. "The digital eye is more perfect and can capture most UFOs, but some are just too fast."
He then claimed that the object was a "classic style disk with a raised dome on top." He also claimed to have observed a "cloud-like smear of color above" the UFO.
Based on the evidence of the "cloud-like smear of color above " the UFO, Waring concluded it was "heading down."
"This is a great capture of a classic style disk with a raised center dome on top.""From the photo I can see a cloud-like smear of color above it. That is the direction from which it came," he said. "It was heading down. It was probably landing in the trees not far from this person."
But other analysts added that the speed at which the object was apparently "heading down" suggests it was more likely crashing to Earth, rather than merely "landing" as Waring suggested.
If the flying saucer was indeed crashing, the "cloud-like smear" might have been smoke issuing from a damaged flying saucer UFO crashing to Earth, UFO analysts suggested.
"UFOs often move fast, so fast that the human eye would not be able to notice... The digital eye can capture most UFOs, but some are just too fast."Waring provided on his blog a zoomed-in copy of the photo, with the object "colorized" to "make it more visible."
The alleged "smoke" appears in the photo as a nebulous smear over an apparently solid object.
However, skeptics have derided Waring's analysis of the photo and suggested that the image was likely just another example of what Scott Brando, a UFO researcher who manages the website UFO of Interest, terms a "blurbo."
The photos below show an alleged UFO that Brando believes was a "blurbo," likely a blurry profile shot of a bird in flight.A blurbo is a blurry, out-of-focus or smeared-out image of common flying objects, such as birds or insects. The object looks blurry because it was caught out of focus by the camera, and smeared out possibly because it was moving at a high speed past the camera lens at the time it was photographed.
The "blurbo" in the latest case may have been caused by an insect flying very close to the camera lens, according to skeptics.
[Image via Shutterstock]