The cryptid lake beast of lore – nicknamed Nessie and lumped alongside the likes of Bigfoot and the Chupacabra – is said to inhabit Loch Ness in the Scottish Highlands.
Many have theorized both the existence of the Loch Ness Monster and its origins – suggesting the animal is the living ancestor from the order plesiosauria, Mesozoic marine reptiles (sauropsida) who first appeared in the early Jurassic Period and thrived until the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction at the end of the Cretaceous Period.
Still irrefutable proof of the creature’s existence has been elusive.
Instead, witnesses offer grainy or vague photographic or video captures of the mysterious water rover – considered anecdotal at best as renderings of the sightings have varied since the 1930s.
Many so-called findings have since been exposed as hoaxes while others remain unexplained and a myriad of possible theories have been posed – citing other possible animals, shadows, etc.
Despite this, the lake monster remains one of the most famous examples of cryptozoology, a pseudoscience involving the search for animals whose existence has not been proven.
However, Dr. Luigi Piccardi, an Italian geologist, believes that sightings of Nessie are due to seismic activity under Loch Ness, as the body of water sits atop an active fault line.
He claims sightings are linked to seismic activity along the very large and active Great Glen fault system, which runs beneath the Loch.
Mini earthquakes, based on his theory, create enough surface-bubbling that on-lookers misinterpret as the body movement of the mythical monster. Thus Nessie is just a geological phenomenon.
Regardless of the many logical theories made, sightings still emerge and capture media attention. Back in April, film students happened to capture a dark figure moving in the water in Lough Foyle (Loch Foyle). Critics say there are inconsistencies in the footage, but you can judge for yourself.
[Feature image via Wikicommons]