Wednesday, 19 June 2019

The Mystery of Crop Circles

Crop circle that appeared opposite Longwood, Owlesbury on 11th June 2019
This crop circle appeared in a field at Owlesbury near Winchester in 11th June 2019 and its photo was shared on Facebook, causing me to look again at a phenomenon that I had long wondered about. Indeed I remember being greatly intrigued when a crop circle appeared on a field at Stocks Farm in the 1980s but I didn't follow it up.

Crop circle, Littleton, Winchester 3rd June 2019
Unfortunately, when talking to people about crop circles, most reach for their mental 'David Icke' button and after an initial lukewarm expression of interest, switch off. However, I happened to mention the most recent one to a friend in Lincolnshire who had a deeper interest and he kindly sent me a book written by Lucy Pringle that goes into considerable scientific detail and conclusively rules out the possibility that the majority are man-made (though a few undoubtedly are).

There is added fascination for me in that the area where I live in Hampshire appears to be the epicentre of crop circle activity. Lucy Pringle's book pictures them in Chilbolton (next to the radio telescope), and many nearby in Wiltshire.  In fact, one of her observations is that they appear in places of known power and significance, which encourages those who believe that their origin must be extra-terrestrial.

The 'Stonehenge Fractal' (1996) - one of the very few formations to have appeared during daylight hours.
A crop circle known as 'Ribbons' appeared opposite Stonehenge on 4th July 2002
The astonishing complexity of most of the crop circles coupled with perfect geometric and mathematical accuracy make it impossible for these structures to have been created by pranksters or even by some peculiar human agency in a few hours of darkness.

Crop circle in Froxfield, Wiltshire (22nd July 2003). This herringbone lay of the wheat is most unusual. No seed heads have been damaged in the process, a feature of all genuine crop circles. 
The extraordinary formation at the Chilbolton Observatory (14th August 2001) is apparently in the form of a computer chip. 
Crop circle at Hackpen Hill, Wiltshire (4th July 1999). The farmer reported that when he sprayed the field the day before, there was no formation. (The blurred area at the top right is caused by me removing some writing from photo). 
The most recent crop circle was found at Danebury in 1st July 2019 and appeared overnight, with the characteristics typical of all genuine ones.  

Some crop circles exhibit such unbelievable complexity that it would be difficult to achieve their design on paper using laser-printer technology, let alone in a field at night under the cover of darkness.
Crop circle near Avebury, Wiltshire (29th July 1996) 
This formation consists of 189 circles and shows incredible mathematical precision. A series of perfect equilateral triangles extend to the perimeter.

Since the beginning of July 2019, many more crop circles have been reported in this immediate area, but I have not reproduced their photos as they all share the same characteristics namely: 
1. They are geometrically perfect. 
2. The stalks have not been bent by mechanical means but heated from within and laid. 
3. There are no broken heads of grain to be found, meaning that no one has trampled them. 

It would be best if every each crop circle report to be accompanied by an analysis of these factors before we get too excited and are disappointed by another seeming hoax.

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