Monday, February 06, 2023


The 2022 Canadian UFO Survey


The 2022 Canadian UFO Survey


Since 1989, Ufology Research (formerly Ufology Research of Manitoba) has solicited UFO case data from known and active investigators and researchers in Canada. The goal has been to provide data for use by researchers trying to understand this controversial phenomenon. 

2022 marked the 34th year of collecting and analysing Canadian UFO report data by Ufology Research, with the total number of Canadian UFO reports in the database now more than 23,500 in total. Tables of most Canadian UFO reports included in the annual surveys from 1989 to the present are available online at:

The 2022 Canadian UFO Survey: Summary of Results

There were 768 UFO sightings recorded in Canada in 2022, a slight increase of about six per cent from 2021. The number of UFO sightings reported in Canada in 2022 was the fourth-lowest over the past 20 years. 

In 2022, Quebec led all Canadian provinces with about 29 per cent of all Canadian UFO reports, edging out Ontario’s 28 per cent. This is the first time that Quebec has recorded the most Canadian UFO reports in a single year since the Canadian UFO Survey began in 1989. BC had 14 per cent, unchanged from 2021, and other provinces and territories had negligible changes in report numbers from the previous year.

In 2022, about 8.2 percent of all UFO reports were classified as unexplained.

The typical UFO sighting lasted approximately 13 minutes in 2022.

Based on the number of reports in 2022 and using the average number of witnesses per case as 1.37, more than 1,000 Canadians had sightings of UFOs in 2022.

The study found that in 2022, about 52 per cent of all UFO sightings were of simple lights in the sky, similar to previous years. Witnesses also reported triangles, spheres, and boomerangs. 

Results of this study show that many people continue to report unusual objects in the sky, and some of these objects do not have obvious explanations. Many witnesses are pilots, police and other individuals with reasonably good observing capabilities and good judgement. 

At least two UFO sightings are reported each day in Canada. Some of these could have explanations such as military exercises and overflights occurring over populated areas. In addition, people are often unaware of the nature of conventional or natural objects in the sky, such as Starlink satellite constellations and large meteors. The good news is that people are taking the time to observe their surroundings, and making a conscious effort to report them to organizations and agencies seeking to monitor UFO activity.

Popular opinion to the contrary, there is no incontrovertible evidence that some UFO cases involve extraterrestrial contact. The continued reporting of UFOs suggests a need for further examination of the phenomenon by social, medical and/or physical scientists.

UFO reports in Canada

The following shows the number of reported UFOs per year since 1989, collected by Ufology Research.

The number of UFO reports per year has varied, although there has been a general trend towards a gradual increase in yearly UFO report numbers over the past 30 years until 2015, and then a slow but steady decline. Media reports of a “huge increase” in UFO reports are not supported by available data. The six per cent increase in UFO reports in 2022 over 2021 is largely due to 37 separate reports filed by one individual regarding objects with definitive explanations. Without these cases, there would be no negligible increase in UFO reports last year at all.

Although there may be a perceived notion that UFOs are not being reported with as much frequency as in the past, UFOs have not “gone away.” This data clearly contradicts comments by those who would assert that UFOs are a ‘passing fad’ or that UFO sightings are decreasing. 

For this study, the working definition of a UFO was: “an object seen in the sky which its observer cannot identify.”

Although the term Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon (UAP) is currently being used more often instead of Unidentified Flying Object (UFO), for consistency this study will continue to use the original term UFO that was in use when the study began in 1989.

Polls have shown that about ten per cent of the Canadian population believe they have seen UFOs. This means that about 3.7 million Canadians have seen UFOs. However, studies have also shown that only about ten per cent of all witnesses of UFOs report their experiences (although this percentage is thought to be much lower).

UFO witnesses range from farmhands to airline pilots and from teachers to police officers.

Witnesses represent all age groups and racial origin. What is being observed? In most cases, only ordinary objects. However, this begs a question. If people are reporting things that can be explained, then the objects they observed were “really there.” Were the objects we can't identify “really there” as well? If so, what were they?

These are questions that only continued and rational research can answer, and only if researchers have the support and encouragement of both scientists and the public.


Data for each UFO case was obtained by Ufology Research from participating researchers across Canada, through receipt of reports directly from witnesses, or through data mining of known websites devoted to UFO reports. This method has not changed significantly during the past 30 years. 

Sources for the 2022 Canadian UFO cases included:

UFO groups and organizations: AQU, AUFOSG, GARPAN, KBCCUFO, MUFON, NUFORC, UFOBC, Ufology Research, UFOSNW

Government sources: Transport Canada, CIRVIS reports

Social media: Facebook, Reddit, Twitter, YouTube

The original intent of the Canadian UFO Survey was to understand exactly how many cases were being reported in a given year, and how they were distributed across the country. It was also deemed desirable to know other characteristics of the UFO reports, such as predominant colours, the durations of sightings, reported shapes, and which UFO types were most common.

The information available on each case was then coded by members of Ufology Research, entered into a database, and statistically analysed. Information on almost all UFO sightings in 2022 was obtained through online sources.

An example of the coding key is as follows:

Example: 2022  01 09 1530 Vernon BC DD 900 silver  2    ps  6   5  UFOBC    p    4 objs. seen 

Field:          1        2   3     4         5        6    7    8        9     10   11 12 13    14       15    16

Field 1 is a default YEAR for the report.

Field 2 is the MONTH of the incident.

Field 3 is the DATE of the sighting.

Field 4 is the local TIME, on the 24-hour clock.

Field 5 is the geographical LOCATION of the incident.  

Field 6 is the PROVINCE where the sighting occurred.

Field 7 is the TYPE of report, using the Modified Hynek Classification System.

Field 8 is the DURATION of the sighting, in seconds (a value of 600 thus represents 10 minutes).

Field 9 is the primary COLOUR of the object(s) seen

Field 10 is the number of WITNESSES

Field 11 is the SHAPE of the object(s) seen

Field 12 is the STRANGENESS of the report.

Field 13 is the RELIABILITY of the report.

Field 14 is the SOURCE of the report.

Field 15 is the EVALUATION of the case.

Field 16 includes any COMMENTS noted about the case.

Distribution of UFO reports across Canada

In 2022, Quebec led all Canadian provinces with about 29 per cent of all Canadian UFO reports, edging out Ontario’s 28 per cent. This is the first time that Quebec has recorded the most Canadian UFO reports in a single year since the Canadian UFO Survey began in 1989. BC had 14 per cent, unchanged from 2021, and other provinces and territories had negligible changes in report numbers from the previous year.

Alberta, Quebec, PEI and Newfoundland and Labrador were the only provinces with increases in report numbers in 2022 compared with 2021. 

In addition, geographical names of UFO sighting locations were examined for trends. Many cities were found to have multiple reports, as noted. (Large metropolitan areas include their suburbs.)

Number of UFO Reports in Metropolitan Areas in 2022

Metropolitan Areas

Toronto         44

Vancouver 36

Montreal         32

Edmonton 23

Calgary 20

London         18

Hamilton         13

Ottawa         12

Quebec City 10

Winnipeg   8

Monthly Trends in UFO Reports

Monthly breakdowns of reports during each year tend to show slightly different patterns. UFO reports generally peak in summer and are at minimum in winter, presumably due to the more pleasant observing conditions during the summer months, when more witnesses are outside. In Canada in 2022, the monthly trend saw a distinct shift to the fall. 

UFO Report Types

An analysis by report type shows a similar breakdown to that found in previous years. The percentage of cases of a particular type remains roughly constant from year to year, with some variations. Most cases were Nocturnal Lights and Nocturnal Discs, which comprised 65 per cent of cases. 

Less than four per cent of all reported UFO cases in 2022 were Close Encounters, emphasizing the reality that very few UFO cases involve anything other than distant objects seen in the sky. This is an important statistic, because the current popular interest in abductions and sensational UFO encounters such as direct contact with aliens is based not on the vast majority of UFO cases but on the tiny fraction of cases which fall into the category of close encounters. Speculation on what aliens may or may not be doing in our airspace seems almost completely unconnected to the question of what are actually being reported as UFOs.

For those unfamiliar with the classifications, a summary follows:

NL (Nocturnal Light) - light source in night sky

ND (Nocturnal Disc) - light source in night sky that appears to have a definite shape

DD (Daylight Disc) - unknown object observed during daytime hours

C1 (Close Encounter of the First Kind) - ND or DD occurring within 200 metres of a witness

C2 (Close Encounter of the Second Kind) - C1 where physical effects left or noted

C3 (Close Encounter of the Third Kind) - C1 where figures/entities are encountered

C4 (Close Encounter of the Fourth Kind) - an alleged "abduction" or "contact" experience

Note: The category of Nocturnal Disc was created in the 1980s by UFOROM originally for differentiation of cases within its own report files, and has been adopted by many other groups worldwide.

Other Report Types

The category of PH indicates the sighting was entirely photographic, without any actual object seen visually. In 2022, there were about 11 per cent of these cases recorded, double the amount in 2021. Many reports listed as NL or ND or DD may also have associated photos or video, so this should not be considered exclusive. 

However, about 40 per cent of all UFO reports are accompanied by photographs or videos (usually from cell phone cameras). This is one rejoinder to the complaint to there are no photos of UFOs, considering the abundance of cameras. Of course, the problem is not that there are no photos or videos of UFOs, but that there are so few good, high-quality, and information-rich useful photos of UFOs.

EV indicates a case in which physical evidence was observed (not necessarily related to any observed object) and RD is a case in which an object was detected with radar but not necessarily observed. UX cases are those in which anomalous phenomena are reported and believed by witnesses to be UFO-related, but no UFO was actually seen. These include reports of “odd sounds,” observations of strange creatures, and dreams.

Hourly Distribution

The hourly distribution of cases has usually followed a similar pattern every year, with a peak at 2200 hours local and a trough around 0900 hours local. About a third of all UFO sightings in 2022 occurred between 9 pm and 11 pm. Since most UFOs are nocturnal lights, most sightings will occur during the evening hours. Since the number of possible observers drops off sharply near midnight, we would expect the hourly rate of UFO reports would vary with two factors: potential observers and darkness. 


The category of Duration is interesting in that it represents the subjective length of time the UFO experience lasted. In other words, this is the length of time the sighting lasted as estimated by the witness. Naturally, these times are greatly suspect because it is known that most people tend to badly misjudge the flow of time. 

Although a witness’ estimate of “one hour” may be in error by several minutes, it is unlikely that the true duration would be, for example, one minute. Furthermore, there have been cases when a UFO was observed and clocked very accurately, so that we can be reasonably certain that UFO events can last considerable periods of time. 

The average duration of UFO sightings in Canada in 2022 was about 13 minutes, similar to that in 2021. 

The length of time an object is seen suggests some simple explanations for what was being observed by the witness. In fact, the duration of a sighting is one of the biggest clues to its explanation. Experience in studying UFO reports has shown us that short duration events are usually fireballs or bolides, and long duration events of an hour or more are very probably astronomical objects moving slowly with Earth’s rotation. Long-duration sightings tend to occur in the early morning hours, from about midnight until 6:00 a.m. 



In cases where colours of an object were reported by witnesses, the most common colour in 2022 was white, mentioned in 290 cases or 56 per cent of reports where a colour was indicated. In 2021, this percentage was 52 per cent.

This result might be related to the abundance of Starlink-related reports, which were uniformly white starlike objects. The next most common colours were orange, multicoloured, and red. Since most UFOs are nocturnal starlike objects, the abundance of white objects is not surprising. 

Colours such as red, orange, blue and green often are associated with bolides (fireballs). Orange is most often associated with the observation of a Chinese lanterns, the launching of which have been popular during the past decade or so. 

The ‘multicoloured’ designation is problematic in that it literally covers a wide range of possibilities. This label has been used, for example, when witnesses described their UFOs as having white, red and green lights. Many of these are certainly stars or planets, which seem to flash a variety of colours when seen low on the horizon. Aircraft are also frequently described as having more than one colour of light, such as flashing coloured red and green wing lights. However, seen from a distance, aircraft can often be visible only as moving white lights.


The average number of witnesses per case in 2022 was 1.37, up slightly from 2021. This value has been as high as 2.4 in 1996, indicating that a UFO experience often has more than one witness, and supports the contention that UFO sightings represent observations of real, physical phenomena, since there is usually at least one corroborator present to support the sighting.

We can then extrapolate the number of Canadians who had seen UFOs in 2021. Given the number of reports in 2022 as 768 and using 1.37 as the number of witnesses per case, we get a value suggesting that at least 1,052 Canadians saw UFOs in 2022. 

The number is likely higher, as studies have shown that only about ten per cent of all UFO sightings are reported (most witnesses choose not to tell anyone, out of fear of ridicule or concern for their reputation). Multiplying by ten, this means it is probable that more than 10,000 Canadians saw UFOs in 2022, or about one in every 4,000 people.


Witnesses’ descriptions of the shapes of UFOs vary greatly. In 2022, like other years, most reported UFOs were simply “point sources”—that is, “starlike” objects or distant lights. There were 268 reports of a UFO that was only a light in 2022. The classic “flying saucer” or disc-shaped object was reported in 28 cases in 2022, down from 36 cases in 2021, and “triangles” were reported in 23 cases in 2022, slightly more than the 17 cases in 2021. Curiously, the number of reports of an object that was cigar shaped or cylindrical increased from 10 per cent in 2021 to 16 per cent in 2022.

The shape of a perceived object depends on many factors such as the witness’ own visual acuity, the angle of viewing, the distance of viewing and the witness’ own biases and descriptive abilities. Nevertheless, in combination with other case data such as duration, shape can be a good clue towards a UFO’s possible explanation.

One recurring problem is the description by a witness of a distant light as an “orb,” implying a spherical shape. The term “orb” has also been adopted by many in ufology who infer that an orb is something mysterious and distinct from a simple light. Upon interviewing witnesses who describe orbs, however, it is clear they only observed a distant light, and their personal belief in alien visitation drove them to label it as something unexplainable.


The assigning of a Strangeness rating to a UFO report is based on a classification adopted by researchers who noted that the inclusion of a subjective evaluation of the degree to which a particular case is in itself unusual might yield some insight into the data. For example, the observation of a single, stationary, starlike light in the sky, seen for several hours, is not particularly unusual and might likely have a prosaic explanation such as that of a star or planet. On the other hand, a detailed observation of a saucer-shaped object which glides slowly away from a witness after an encounter with grey-skinned aliens would be considered highly strange.

A Strangeness rating is assigned during the data entry process, based on the given information about each case. It is subjective, but based on the general criteria noted above.

The numbers of UFO reports according to a strangeness rating show an inverse relationship such that the higher the strangeness rating, the fewer reports. The one exception to this relationship occurs in the case of very low strangeness cases, which are relatively few in number compared to those of moderate strangeness. It is suggested this is the case because in order for an observation to be considered a UFO, it must usually rise above an ad hoc level of strangeness, otherwise it would not be considered strange at all.

The average strangeness rating for UFO reports during 2022 was about 4.1, where 1 is considered not strange at all and 9 is considered exceptionally unusual. This was similar to 2021.


The average Reliability rating of Canadian UFO reports in 2022 was just under 5, meaning that most cases had minimal investigation, likely only a report form filled out by a witness, and without extensive supporting documentation or investigation.

Higher reliability cases include actual interviews with witnesses, a detailed case investigation, multiple witnesses, supporting documentation and other evidence. Since data for many cases are taken from websites and second-hand postings, or in fact self-postings, there is usually no significant investigation of UFO sightings. Well-investigated cases seem to comprise only a small fraction of all UFO data, a fact that makes UFO case data have limited value.

Reliability and Strangeness ratings tend to vary in classic bell-shaped curves. In other words, there are very few cases which were both highly unusual and well-reported. Most cases are of medium strangeness and medium reliability. These are the “high-quality unknowns” which will be discussed later. However, there are also very few low-strangeness cases with low reliability. Low-strangeness cases, therefore, tend to be well-reported and probably have explanations.


UFO data used in this study were supplied by many different groups, organizations, official agencies and private individuals. Since this annual survey began in the late 1980s, more and more cases have been obtained and received via the Internet.

In 2022, about 28 per cent of Canadian cases in were reported to the large organization known as the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON), which has an online reporting system. L’association québécoise d'ufologie (AQU) provided 17 per cent of the 2022 case data. About 20 per cent of the total cases were obtained through the National UFO Reporting Center in the USA, about double as many as in 2021. Like MUFON, both AQU and NUFORC have toll-free telephone numbers for reporting UFOs and a large sightings list created through voluntary submission of online report forms by witnesses. 

About five per cent of all UFO sightings reported in 2021 were sent directly to Ufology Research, but 11 per cent were reported to The Night Time Podcast, which were then provided directly to Ufology Research. About six per cent of all cases came as a result of information obtained through government sources such as Transport Canada and the Department of National Defence. 

Often, UFO sightings are reported by witnesses on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, and YouTube. Because of the difficulty in verifying information posted on social media, these cases usually have lower Reliability ratings. 

It should be noted that the preparation of this Survey is becoming quite challenging. Few UFO investigators or researchers actually submit case directly data to UFOROM, despite requests, requiring considerable searching of online sources. And, although many sites post information about UFO sightings, very little actual UFO investigation is being conducted. In fact, it could be said that the science of good and thorough UFO investigation has nearly become extinct, if it existed at all. This does not bode well for an area of study that is under constant criticism by debunkers wishing to prove the unscientific nature of the subject.


There are four operative categories in the Canadian UFO Survey: Explained, Insufficient Information, Possible or Probable Explanation, and Unknown (or Unexplained). It is important to note that a classification of Unknown does not imply that an alien spacecraft or mysterious natural phenomenon was observed; no such interpretation can be made with certainty, based solely on the given data.

The breakdown by Conclusion for 2022 UFO reports showed the percentage of unexplained cases at about 8 per cent of the total, up marginally from last year. The percentage of cases with definite explanations is about 14 per cent. The percentage of cases with probable explanations was about 44 percent, and those with Insufficient Information comprised 33 per cent.

It is also important to note that a high number of Unexplained cases in a given year does not mean those cases are necessarily alien spacecraft. Many Unexplained cases have low reliability or Strangeness, and some might be Unexplained but could be objects such as drones or military projects for which we do not have full data but enough to suggest they are unusual.

The evaluation of UFO reports has both subjective and quantitative components. 

E (Explained) is used when it can be determined with certainty that the UFO seen was a known object, such as a Chinese Lantern, a photographic defect, re-entering satellite, or astronomical object.

I (Insufficient Information) is used if there is information lacking that could help identify the UFO. A lack of a definite date or location is insufficient information, for example.

P (Possible or Probable Explanation) is used if the description of the observed UFO fits well with a prosaic explanation or a conventional object.

U (Unknown or Unexplained) is used if all data points are available, if the description and behaviour of the UFO do not easily conform to that of a conventional object. If there is supporting documentation and there has been some investigation to rule out a prosaic explanation, this increases the likelihood of coding the case as an Unknown.

It is important to note that a classification of Unknown does not imply that an alien spacecraft or mysterious natural phenomenon was observed; no such interpretation can be made with certainty, based solely on the given data. Evaluation reflects a subjective evaluation by researchers who question whether a particular report has enough information to consider it as having a possible explanation or if there is simply not enough information to make that judgement.

This situation has likely arisen because very few UFO sightings are ever fully investigated, as most are simply reported and published online, often without any follow-up or investigation possible. An Evaluation is made subjectively by either or both the contributing investigators and the compilers of this study.

The category of Unknown is adopted if there is relatively significant information or data available and/or if the contributed data or case report contains enough information such that a conventional explanation cannot be satisfactorily proposed. This does not mean that the case will never be explained, but only that a viable explanation is not immediately obvious. With additional investigation, many Unknowns can be moved to other categories or explained completely.

The level and quality of UFO report investigation varies because there are no explicit and rigorous standards for UFO investigation. Investigators who are “believers” might be inclined to consider most UFO sightings as mysterious, whereas those with more of a skeptical predisposition might tend to subconsciously (or consciously) reduce the Unknowns in their files. It unfortunately true that comparatively little investigation is done on the majority of UFO or UAP sightings reported.


Special thanks are due to Geoff Dittman, Ralph Howard, Curt Collins, and Jordan Bonaparte for assistance and advice in preparation of the 2022 Canadian UFO Survey.



Some Interesting UFO Sightings Reported in 2022


Some Interesting UFO Sightings Reported in 2022

In 2022, out of the 768 UFO/UAP reports that were recorded or received by researchers, a small number were of objects that seemed more interesting than others. These ranged from a saucer-shaped object that hovered over a boat near Vancouver, to an arrangement of lights seen over a field in Quebec. One person submitted 37 separate reports of UFOs photographed by an infrared camera, and there were 45 incidents of interest noted by Transport Canada, including a pilot’s observation of what appeared to be a person in a “wingsuit” at an altitude of 13,000 feet.

Cases of note:

March 3, 2022        6:45 am         Fox Creek      AB      

A witness watched an object in the sky that seemed to have a spiral of light surrounding it. It travelled slowly northeast until the spiral vanished and the light itself went out. Possibly a missile launch. Source: MUFON

July 1, 2022              7:15 pm         Montreal       PQ     

A round, black object moved across the daytime sky, underneath clouds. Possibly a balloon of some kind. Source: MUFON        

July 11, 2022           6:15 am         Alberta Beach          AB      

A line of bright lights appeared in the dawn sky near the horizon before sunrise. Source: MUFON

September 24, 2022         7:00 pm         Ste-Martine  PQ     

While driving, witnesses watched a group of bright lights stationary above trees along the horizon. Source: AQU

June 6, 2022            1:58 pm         Lodgepole     AB      

A trio of bright objects moved slowly, altering their formation as they flew across the distant hills. Source: MUFON

March 29, 2022      5:45 am         Yellowstone              AB      

A bright object was seen several mornings as it moved near the witness. Later, footprints thought to be from a Bigfoot were found. Source: MUFON

September 10, 2022         8:00 pm         Vancouver    BC      

Witnesses reported that a large, disc-shaped object, with a mirror-like finish on its underside, hovered over their sailboat on the Fraser River. Source: MUFON

October 24, 2022   8:05 pm         Edmonton     AB      

A loud noise like an explosion was heard. Then a grey, vibrating, boomerang-shaped object moved above a terrified witness before it flew away. Source: MUFON

June 19, 2022          2:15 am         Tunnel Lake  ON     

A witness observed a bright object with several distinct sections within it, appear and move slowly southeast. It stopped in the sky for 30 seconds then continued on its way. Source: MUFON         

June 28, 2022          8:02 pm         Gatineau       PQ

An automatic infrared camera recorded a fast-moving object that flew past its field of view in less than two seconds. Although this is likely just an insect beating its wings as it went by, 36 other photographs like this were submitted as reports in 2022 by the same individual. Source: NUFORC

June 16, 2022          5:54 am         Toronto         ON     

A pilot reported seeing what was described as “a person in a wingsuit” flying at an altitude of 13,000 feet. The incident was filed with Transport Canada.

July 6, 2022              5:06 pm         Spruce Grove           AB      

A witness said he was followed by a black, triangular object that buzzed him and flew away. Later, chunks of what appeared to be molten metal were found on the ground where he had been standing. Source: MUFON



The “Chinese Spy Balloon” of February 2023


The “Chinese Spy Balloon” of February 2023

Regarding the international incident of the observation and tracking of a Chinese reconnaissance balloon over the USA in February 2023, it can be noted that several CADORS incident reports during the past 20 years involved high altitude balloons in Canadian airspace reported by pilots.

In 2022, for example, CADORS incident report 2022A0621 concerned a large balloon seen on July 5, 2022, over New Brunswick. That evening, the pilot of an American Airlines Boeing 787-8 from Chicago/O'Hare, IL (KORD) to Rome, Italy (LIRF) reported seeing “...a large white balloon with an attached box and long tail at about FL400 (40,000 feet). They could not tell if the balloon was ascending, descending or in level flight.”

Years earlier, on March 24, 2015, a WestJet Boeing 737 flying from Halifax, NS (CYHZ) to Toronto, ON (CYYZ) descending through 14,000 feet reported an object passing very close to the left side of the aircraft, according to CADORS 2015O0488.

And CADORS 2011O0806, on April 10, 2011, over Chatham, Ontario, when NAV CANADA staff at Toronto ACC were advised by the crew of AAL488 (heading eastbound, descending to 24,000 feet) that they had passed a very large, yellow balloon at 28,000 feet.



The Transport Canada incident of July 27, 2022, at 2131Z (4:31 pm local time)


The Transport Canada incident of July 27, 2022, at 2131Z (4:31 pm local time)

Although occurring on July 27, 2022, a CADORS report was made public on February 2, 2023 by Transport Canada regarding a UFO incident near Kitchener/Waterloo, Ontario.

CADORS report 2022O3179 notes:

A member of the public reported seeing an object that could not be classified as a fixed-wing rotary wing aircraft, a drone, nor any type of lighter-than-air aircraft. It was over Kitchener, apparently north of Fairview Park mall, moving silently and rather slowly from around 050. It then made a wide right turn to a heading around 020, and crossed the approach flight path to Runway 08 at the Kitchener/Waterloo, ON (CYKF) aerodrome, an obvious hazard to an incoming aircraft. It maintained the heading of 020 until it was too far to see. At all times, it remained below cloud base. As it was receding, a small single-engine plane, a high-wing monoplane with tricycle gear on a heading of approximately 090, appeared to pass relatively close to this object.

According to the CADORS information provided, photographs of the UFO were taken but were not included in the report.

The report came from a member of the public and not through Transport Canada or Nav Canada, as do most CADORS reports. It was therefore in the opinion of the witness that object could not be explained, not in the opinion of aviation authorities.

As this report was not made public until 2023, it could not be included in the 2022 Canadian UFO Survey but is noted here as information.


Friday, December 23, 2022


Yukon UFO looked like "Santa Claus and his reindeer"

One of the classic Canadian UFO cases of all time, the giant UFO seen by dozens of witnesses on the night of December 11, 1996, was described in many different ways.

But the most vivid description was that by children in a family that watched it move across the sky near Carmacks, Yukon.

Martin Jasek traveled throughout Yukon and interviewed more than 35 witnesses of the remarkable object, who observed it from many different locations that night.

In his greatly detailed analysis of the case, he included the Carmacks observation:

This group of 5 witnesses to the UFO sighting in Carmacks consisted of a mother, father and their three children. At the time the family was staying at a house in Carmacks… The witnesses were interviewed together.

The father of the family… was watching television when he noticed a long row of lights moving in the distance through a window facing northeast. 

“I thought it was a jumbo 747! But I listened for sound, but nothing!" The father called the rest of the family to have a look. They were all amazed! 

Getting close to Christmas, the 3 children, of whom the eldest was six years old, thought that it was Santa Claus and his reindeer. 

The UFO consisted of “four big balls of light in a row” red-yellow in color with “a little bit of blue.” At the left and right side of this row of lights were smaller lights that were orange and green… 

The UFO was slowly drifting from left to right, “it looked pretty low, just over the trees” and was about 2 feet at arms length in size in the sky. There were also what appeared to be white sparkles dropping away from the base of the larger lights. They were dropping at an angle to the left, consistent with the UFO moving to the right.

The father thought that their sighting occurred at about 9 pm that night but it might have been an hour or more earlier. (Times of witnesses' observations that night varied between 7 and 9 pm.)

With the exception of only a few witnesses, the majority of the descriptions of the object were relatively consistent and led skeptic Ted Molczan to conclude that what was seen was actually the re-entry of a rocket booster that was in the sky at the that exact time and over that part of Yukon.

Others say that the giant mothership was an actual UFO that was in the pre-Christmas night sky. In fact, the Canadian government itself considered the case of enough historical and cultural significant that it minted an actual coin to commemorate the event.

While others... believe that Santa himself visited Yukon that night.

[BTW: The Canadian military tracks Santa's flight as part of its partnership with NORAD, and you can check its site here.]


Tuesday, December 13, 2022


More Christmas UFOs and UAPs


Going through the various Canadian government UFO files, many Christmastime reports can be found. I've already posted about some of them, but here are some interesting docs.

On Dec. 13, 1992, a dark object trailing smoke was seen moving across the sky for half an hour. Unfortunately, the location was redacted.

On December 21, 1994, up near Fort Smith, NWT, a bright object was seen by travelers on a highway.

Also in the far North, on December 28, 1994, near Pond Inlet, Canadian Rangers saw a number of lights moving towards Iqaluit.

A pilot was referred to me regarding a bright, unflashing red light that he and a co-pilot watched near Whale Cove, Nunavut just before Christmas 2001.

A UFO was verified on radar on December 21, 2007, when a helicopter pilot reported seeing a steady white light flying between 30,000 to 40,000 ft near Halifax, Nova Scotia.

And that's just a sampling of the strange objects reported as UFOs over Canada during the Christmas season over the years.

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Thursday, December 01, 2022


A curious collection of Canadian CADORS cases


The past few weeks, there has been a rash of recent incident reports of interest that have been made public by Transport Canada.

On November 11, 2022, the pilot of a commercial airliner flying from Montreal to Paris reported a drone flying uncomfortably close to his aircraft. The flight was at 9,000 ft and the crew watched as the drone flew within 200-300 ft off the left wingtip. This all took place as the airliner was approximately over Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec, about 40 km east of Montreal, at 12:42 pm local time. It was noted as CADORS report 2022Q4099.

Of course, a drone is not a UFOor is it?

There has been considerable discussion within ufology and UAP experts regarding the American government’s revelation that many UFOs/UAPs could be Chinese drones. UFO fans insist that UFO witnesses such as USN pilots, for example, would know the difference between a drone and anything else.

In Canada, there’s an interesting distinction between UFOs and drones, at least according to Transport Canada, the Canuck version of the FAA in the USA.

(This is apart from the fact that Canada still uses the term “unidentified flying object” and UFO in official documentation of aerospace incident reports. UAP be damned.)

In the daily Canadian Civil Aviation Daily Occurrence Reporting System (CADORS) incident reports, drone encounters are usually classified as things that could potentially endanger aircraft, like 2022Q4099:

Now, some aerospace researchers have pointed out that most drones fly at much less than 9,000 ft, so this was either a runaway toy or something more advanced. Was this a Chinese or Russian UAP?

It’s important to note, however, that even if this was a drone and not a UAP, the fact that it was in the flight path of a large commercial airliner shows that there is a need to monitor airspace for such intrusions, and that collecting reports and information on UAP is a serious and necessary exercise.

(Drones can be and are reported directly to Transport Canada through a dedicated website.)

Thank goodness they didn't need to take "evasive action!"

A day later, on November 12, 2022, something unlike a drone was reported approximately over the tiny hamlet of Kenabeek, Ontario:

In this case (2022O2794), the classification of UFO was clearly indicated. This was a cargo flight from Chicago to Frankfurt, the flight path of which passed over that part of Canada. At about 3:21 am local time, pilots saw “lights that were moving eastward at the same speed of the aircraft.”

That’s all we know. We don’t know how long the lights were seen, whether they were below the plane or off the port or starboard, or what the lights looked like. So sure, they were UFOs, but without more information, this case has to be labeled as “Insufficient Information.”

Was there some additional investigation or follow-up by Nav Canada? Were the pilot and crew interviewed to obtain other details? Without any clear idea of what was observed, there’s no way of knowing if there was ever any danger to the crew or anyone else, despite this being some kind of intrusion into Canadian airspace.

Four days later, on November 16, 2022, according to case 2022A1139, something that was classified neither as a drone or a UFO was seen by a pilot flying an airliner between Toronto and St. John’s Newfoundland.

The aircraft was over Placentia Bay, over open water near a dangerous ocean location identified on maps as Shag Roost Sunkers within the Ragged Islands. (Really. For god’s sake don’t sail a boat anywhere near that place.)

The pilot thought the “strange light” was about 60 nautical miles or 110 km west of the St. John’s airport, which means the light was near the indicated coordinates of the aircraft. So was it near the aircraft?

But notice the category assigned to this incident: “Laser interference.” Unfortunately, many pilots report having green lasers shone at their aircraft while in flight, often causing temporary blindness at critical times, such as takeoff and landing. Sometimes, the culprits are UFO fans who believe the light they see in the sky is a UFO and are trying to signal the aliens on board. These are very dangerous situations, and fortunately, pilot reports of these instances are referred to RCMP who are able to track down the perpetrators.

In most of the CADORS reports with this label, it’s very clear that handheld lasers were indeed the cause, most often green in colour and shining on the cockpit. But in this case, all that was reported was “a strange light,” which could have been anything.

Again, we would need more information to better understand what happened.

On November 20, 2022, at about 3:00 pm in the afternoon, “an object with a beam of light” was seen by someone in or near Hampton, New Brunswick.

In this case, 2022A1173, there’s no indication of a pilot or crew being the witnesses, so it’s possible this was someone on the ground. Whomever it was, he or she saw this object heading northwest towards Fredericton, which would mean it was heading directly over CFB Gagetown, and at an estimated altitude of between 1000 to 2000 ft. As it flew, the object seemed to break up “into four objects with similar beams of light.”

It’s not a stretch to think that this was a military flight of some sort, the beams of light corresponding to the landing lights of an aircraft going towards the airbase.

But this was classified as a UFO, so without sufficient information about what was seen, that’s how Transport Canada filed it.

On November 23, 2022, in the early afternoon, the pilot of a small commercial flight had just taken off from a small airport in northern Saskatchewan when the Traffic Collision Avoidance System (TCAS) alerted him of another aircraft in the area. This system is independent of airport radar equipment and notifies a pilot that there is another aircraft nearby. In this case, the CADORS report 2022C5963 noted that there was “No reported traffic.”

It should be noted that a TCAS alert does not necessarily mean that there’s another plane on a collision course. The TCAS can only detect another aircraft’s transponder if it is working and set properly to begin with. Then, the TCAS calculates the range and altitude and extrapolates the possible course of the other aircraft.

In most CADORS incident reports, TCAS alerts have resolutions. That is, the aircraft detected is identified and air traffic control (ATC) at the airport is able to paint it on radar and see its true course. The pilot receiving the TCAS alert is then able to change course or the other aircraft will be directed to do so. TCAS by itself does not have a radar system, but uses the onboard radar to supplement other input.

Following a TCAS alert, there will almost always be a resolution advisory (RA) which instructs the pilot on what to do. Also, the approaching aircraft will be identified.

But not always, and this is why it’s instructive to look at TCAS incident reports that don’t seem to involve another aircraft. Was the TCAS malfunctioning, or any of its input sources?

This case was an instrumented detection of an unknown object and was unresolved. In many ways, this was similar to a “UFO report” noted by a MADAR node operated by the new version of NICAP. MADAR nodes basically operate as magnetometers, detecting changes in local geomagnetic fields that are thought to be influenced by UAPs (originally UFOs). The theory is that a detection alert will send the node into action, using surveillance cameras to try and photograph and otherwise capture whatever caused the anomaly.

Such detections are noted by some UFO groups and are in fact included by NUFORC in its list of UFO report data. Given that they are instrumented detections only, without visual or other verification, they are quite similar to TCAS reports.

Later that same day, however, on November 23, 2022, but later in the day, just before midnight, odd lights were seen by pilots of a commercial aircraft flying from Washington, DC, to Zurich.

Incident report 2022A1161 notes the aircraft was located above the southern tip of Newfoundland, near Point au Gaul, close to the town of Saint Lawrence. The pilot saw “white lights moving left and right, up and down.” It’s not noted how long the lights were seen, but the last reported position was east of St. John’s, more than 150 km away, so the lights were seen for a while, at least.

Again, this was classified as “Laser interference,” which is rather odd as the plane was well over open water when the lights were first seen, and it’s pretty unlikely someone had a laser pointer on a boat around there.

The description of the lights also seems rather strange. There’s no indication of the direction in the sky the lights were seen, not their height above the water. Also, note that the plural is used: lights, not just one light. How many? In any configuration? How did these differ from stars or anything else in the sky?

One can speculate that if the lights were seen towards the south, then they might have been on fishing boats or other ships around the Grand Banks, only 250 km away.

But without further details, this case must also be considered Insufficient Information.

Finally, on November 25, 2022, there was another TCAS case, 2022Q4166, this time involving a private flight from Rouyn-Noranda, Quebec, in the north to Grand-Riviere, Quebec, in the south. The pilot reported getting a TCAS about an object at 1,000 ft, while his plane was 3 NM northwest of the Rouyn-Noranda airport. No visual or radio contact with the target was made.

This collection of Canadian CADORS cases indicates that pilots are continuing to report unusual activity to authorities, in compliance with Transport Canada regulations. What we don’t know is if any of these cases were followed up or investigated further by Nav Canada or any other agency.

Some individuals have wondered about the lag in reporting and publishing incidents, but given the likelihood of bureaucratic red tape and slow administrative procedures, the average time between an incident occurring and its report release is about 10 days, something that isn’t really surprising.

Further, none of these cases suggest any kind of extratrerrestrial activity, as implied (and often explicitly stated) by UFO experts, and seem to support the cautious tone offered by representatives of the American All-Domain Anomaly Resolution Office (AARO) or its predecessor the Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Task Force (UAPTF).


Saturday, September 24, 2022


20 years ago: UFO report from Labrador

From the Ufology Research files:

On September 8, 2002, a pilot was flying at 43,000 ft, 60 miles west of Nain, Labrador, and reported a UFO that "looked like a balloon." The object was above his plane, at an estimated altitude of 47,000 ft.

Map of the area, above.

The sparse report filed with the Canadian Department of National Defence had little additional information.


Friday, September 23, 2022


Coverage by media of Canadian government interest in UFOs


There’s been an uptick in the amount of coverage given to UFOs by Canadian media over the past few years, much of it involving the public comments by some Canadian politicians about the subject. In addition, recent results of ATI requests (the Canadian equivalent of American FOIA requests) of government records regarding UFOs have produced some very curious documents.

The most significant of these media stories were written by one journalist in particular, Daniel Otis, who started his series of articles in the online news source Vice and has continued his work now as reporter with CTV News, a major mainstream Canadian media company.

Otis sold a handful of stories to Vice starting in 2014 about various cool things, but then in 2021 he began a series of excellent news stories about Canadian government interest in UFOs.

His first one for Vice described how “Canada’s military is being notified when pilots spot UFOs in Canadian airspace,” citing CIRVIS (Communication Instructions for Reporting Vital Intelligence Sightings) reports filed with Canada’s Department of National Defence and obtained by Otis through ATI requests.

That article seemed to start the ball rolling, and Otis’ timing was impeccable as American interest in UAP was surging in 2021 with the flurry of activity over the UAP Task Force and AATIP and other programs.

Otis interviewed me for his first Vice story because he knew I was involved in studying Canadian UFO reports and government documents. He also acknowledged me in his later stories, and it was good to get some recognition for my work. As many know, I have been including Canadian government documents of UFO sightings throughout the past 32 years of producing the Canadian UFO Survey (and also much, much earlier). While I haven’t made a big deal of that, Otis’ articles are among the first to note my extensive involvement in UFO research using official Canadian documents.

Otis has done a remarkable job of digging out official Canadian documents about UFOs, including cases where pilots reported UFOs and a video taken by a Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer of a UFO over a Canadian city.

He continued to produce some very interesting stories for Vice, and then in September 2021, he had a piece published that focused on my work. He had filed an ATI and found that: “Canada’s government and military have forwarded UFO reports to a civilian researcher for over two decades,” noting I was “Canada’s ‘point man.’”

Otis obtained copies of the PowerPoint slides accompanying a briefing for Canada’s Minister of Defence in May 2021. The briefing described the history and current status of official Canadian government interest in UFOs, and included a note about how I had been conducting civilian research on UFOs for decades. A later document showed that my photograph was even included on one slide!

What I had not revealed to anyone is that I was asked by DND in May 2021 for the information they used to brief the Minister.

Needless to say, this caused a bit of a stir. I did not know I was personally going to be included in the briefing, but I figured my info would be useful in informing the Minister of Defence. I did not know when the briefing was going to be made.

(Curiously, Otis’ persistence in tracking the story found that in 2022, another briefing had occurred, this time for the current Minister of Transport. And sure enough, the same basic information was presented, including a reference to me.)

Otis had been a writer for CTV from 2016 to 2019 and then again in 2021 as a journalist for CTV News. He’s done some stories for them about UFOs, all focusing on government involvement and politicians’ interest in the subject. In fact, Otis broke the news that Member of Parliament Larry Maguire went public with his interest in UAP and his questions in a Parliamentary Committee about UAP over Canadian nuclear sites.

Maguire stated publicly that on January 28, 2021, he had been briefed by Robert Powell and others from SCU and then on February 16, 2021, by Lue Elizondo and his associates. Then on October 20, 2021, Powell and Christopher Mellon met with another unnamed Canadian Member of Parliament. Oddly enough, without any knowledge of these meetings with others, and completely apart from my being noted in a briefing to the Minister of Defence, in June 2021 I was asked by Maguire’s office to discuss Canada’s government UFO involvement. I met with Maguire on June 3, 2021, although this was not mentioned in media.

Since then, a few more Canadian politicians have spoken publicly about UFOs and UAP, and Otis is hot on their trail.

And more recently, Maguire kindly provided a statement for release during the launch of my most recent book, Canada’s UFOs: Declassified.

Definitely more to come!

Good work, Daniel!


Thursday, September 08, 2022


Canada's UFO: Declassified


As most of you will know, I have been fascinated with the UFO phenomenon for many years. I find the entire spectrum of ufology quite interesting, from the UFO sightings and concurrent reports themselves, to the investigations and analyses. Further, the views of the scientific community, the treatment and coverage of the subject by media, and the response of the public to the UFO phenomenon all combine to make the subject worthy of study from a psychological and sociological perspective. And the debates and arguments of UFO fans and zealots regarding specific cases, the interpretation of government documents, unsubstantiated claims and wild speculation all combine to create a confusing morass of information that befuddle, obfuscate, and bemuse.

Over the years I have investigated UFO sightings, catalogued and statistically analysed UFO data, shared my findings with scientists and lay researchers, and coordinated the annual Canadian UFO Survey since 1989. I have pursued and reviewed government documents related to UFOs and assisted officials in their managing of the information.

I’ve written extensively about my studies in ufology since the mid-1970s. I’ve had articles published in both ufozines and peer-reviewed academic journals, I’ve blogged since 2005, and before that I had self-published The Swamp Gas Journal between 1978 and 2003, making it one of the longest-running ufozines at that time.

My tenth book on UFOs and related subjects is now out, published by August Night Press. Canada’s UFOs: Declassified is the result of a “deep dive” I undertook to better understand the Canadian government’s investigations and analyses of UFO reports. Over a decade ago, Libraries and Archives Canada digitized almost 9,000 pages of documents related to UFOs, mostly from the National Research Council of Canada and the Department of Defence. These documents have been available to the public but many of the cases recorded within them had never been broadly discussed or widely circulated.

Over the past several years there has been a resurgence of interest in UFOs (now termed UAP to detract from the populist connotations of alien spacecraft as UFOs), largely due to a series of claims about American military personnel witnessing unidentified objects while on maneuvers and operations. Media attention and public relations activity advancing interest in the subject have attracted the interest of American politicians who in turn have pressured the Pentagon and other branches of government to create a task force and then an office to determine the nature of the objects seen and detected by military personnel.

I had been reviewing the Canadian government and military documents for several years and was in the process of writing another book when the American interest was gaining momentum, so I decided to write specifically about the Canadian government experience. The result was Canada’s UFOs: Declassified.

Because I had been in receipt of Canadian government information about UFOs for many years, I had been mentioned in a briefing to the incoming Canadian Minister of Defence in 2021 regarding the Canadian response to the American UAP situation. Also, I had been asked to brief a Canadian Member of Parliament about my research on the subject, related to the American attention developments.

This Member of Parliament was Mr. Larry Maguire, MP for Brandon-Souris. He has had a personal interest in UFOs for many years and has taken the opportunity of the American situation to publicly express his concern about UAP in Canadian airspace. He has since commented about this on other occasions and in a Parliamentary committee, having asked me for information to supplement and support his concerns.

For the occasion of the launch of my new book, I formally invited Mr. Maguire to attend and also give a public statement related to UAP. He agreed, but later gave his regrets as he was needed in a meeting that conflicted with the book launch. However, Mr. Maguire prepared a statement for me that could be presented at the public launch event.

Maguire took the opportunity to praise my book and, among his thoughts, noted:

After decades of little to no movement from governments on revealing what they know about Unidentified Aerial Phenomenon (UAP), it looks like we are on the precipice of getting some answers.

When the Department of National Defence was recently tasked with compiling a briefing for the Minister, they went to Rutkowski.

When I needed information on UAP sightings near Canadian nuclear facilities, I relied on his database and institutional knowledge. The interactions I had with a Deputy Minister at a Parliamentary Committee, armed with the information Rutkowski provided, led to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission committing to co-operate with its American counterparts on UAP.

That speaks volumes about Rutkowski’s work and this book reflects his steadfast commitment to documenting the best Canadian UAP reports and government documents that show how government departments and law enforcement have taken this issue a lot more seriously than some would think.

For politicians and policy makers like myself who are just getting around to better understanding how the Government of Canada documented and collected information, this is a must-read book. As the stigma has started to recede, paving the way for academics, scientists, and everyday people to investigate this phenomenon, Rutkowski has given us a foundation to build from. This is not a new issue, but the seriousness of those in high places willing to openly talk about it is something we should all get used to.

As we watch what’s happening with UAP in Congress, at NASA and with the courageous academics who are not afraid to go against the grain, Canada’s UFO: Declassified is another proof point that the phenomena knows no borders or boundaries. There is a rich and deep historical record of incidents right here in Canada.

I am extremely flattered by Mr. Maguire’s comments on my book and I am grateful for his statement. His courage and conviction to publicly express his interest and concern about UAP indicates that government officials are starting to take the matter more seriously and desire to heighten conversation about UFOs/UAP at the highest level.

I hope that Canada’s UFOs: Declassified adds favourably to the conversation.


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