Thursday, April 10, 2014

 

Earthquakes, UFOs, and all that stuff


Some new research has been published in a scientific journal about the relationship between UFOs and earthquakes. Ostensibly, however, the research is about luminous objects called earthquake lights are observed at or around the time of significant seismic events.  The paper is available at:

http://srl.geoscienceworld.org/content/85/1/159.extract

This is significantly different in scope from the Tectonic Strain Theory of UFOs, proposed many years ago by Michael Persinger, a Canadaian neuroscientist who believes that most UFO reports can be explained as energy releases from tiny seismic events deep underground. (He's also the guy who says UFO abduction experiences can be explained by electromagnetic effects on the temporal lobe in the brain.)

Anyway, I had originally thought this made some sense, until I began studying the data and the evidence to support the theory, in detail. In short, I found it lacking. I prepared a long treatise on why this was so, in my opinion. It's available online at:

http://psican.org/alpha/index.php?%2F20130514760%2FUFO-News-Articles-and-Editorials%2FThe-Tectonic-Strain-Theory-of-Geophysical-Luminosities.html

Supporters of the TST didn't take kindly to my criticisms, so a bit of a heated exchange erupted in scientific journals regarding whether UFOs really could be explained as energy from seismicity. (This was actually quite significant: to debate a theory of UFOs in a recognized scientific journal!)

Curiously, I was the only critic of the theory among all of ufology. Practically everyone else seemed to think it made perfect sense, apparently. 

http://www.amsciepub.com/doi/abs/10.2466/pms.1984.58.3.840?journalCode=pms

The TST theory continued to chug along, and I continued to voice concerns, until it seemed to have reached its peak... or nadir. Proponents claimed that UFO investigators were at risk of dying of cancer because the energy released by the seismic events - which are what were reported by witnesses as UFOs - would cause the cancerous cells to multiply in people frequenting UFO hotspots. And those, of course, would be UFO investigators.

A medical researcher found this as absurd as I did, and we published a note about this in a major medical journal.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1269166/?page=2

So, are UFO sightings and earthquakes related?

You be the judge.




Labels:


 

Ann Druffel's recommendations about working with UFO abductees


Noted ufologist Ann Druffel published an article all the way back in 1987, making recommendations on how to deal with UFO abductees.

At the time, alien abduction research was still in its infancy, so her suggestions and her classification of UFO abductees (and contactees) is interesting reading for those wishing to "support" people who are now known as "UFO experiencers."

In short, she found that only two of the six classifications of UFO abductees would benefit from support groups, and that ufologists working with most abductees would have a lot of difficulty. She also spoke out very strongly on having clinical professionals such as psychologists and medical doctors (including psychiatrists) help evaluate and treat abductees for their "emotional damage" caused by either the trauma of their experiences themselves or by the consequences of their coming forward with their stories. In many cases, Druffel noted, abductees/contactees have histories of neuroses, relationship issues, social problems and poor work histories.

And yet, here we are, more than 25 years later, and abductee "support groups" are continuing to chug along, often without adequate medical support for people with emotional trauma.

Thanks anyway, Ann.





Labels:


 

Recent comments about UFOs and the state of ufology


A talk I gave at Dream Big, the day before Neil deGrasse Tyson gave his presentation. I spoke about the state of Canadian ufology, and in particular, what people in Canada really are seeing and reporting.

https://soundcloud.com/uofmstudentlife/ufo-phenomenon-in-canada-talk

And the review of the talk:

http://www.communitynewscommons.org/our-city/education/increased-ufo-sighting-discussed-at-dream-big-event/

And as well, I was a guest on the Paracast recently:

http://www.theparacast.com/podcasts/paracast_140406.mp3

And the ensuing discussion:

http://www.theparacast.com/forum/threads/chris-rutkowski-and-the-canadian-ufo-report-april-6-2014.14868/




Labels:


Thursday, April 03, 2014

 

Bill Clinton and UFOs


It didn't take long for the Conspiracy Theorists and Disclosure Proponents (CT&DPs) to jump on the recent comments by Bill Clinton in response to questions from Jimmy Kimmel about UFOs. 

First salient point: He's not saying anything he hasn't said before. 

Second point: He said there were no aliens at Roswell. So, since CT&DPs insist politicians (even retired ones) lie about everything, there really must have been aliens there. (Corollary: Paul Hellyer, darling of CT&DPs, says aliens are definitely here, so being a retired politician too, he must be lying. And therefore aliens do not exist.) 

Third point: Clinton stated a belief held by most astronomers and the public that aliens probably exist elsewhere in the universe. Which is nothing that you can't read about in any pop science publication. 

In other words, there's no news here, people.


http://dailycaller.com/2014/04/03/bill-clinton-on-aliens-if-we-were-visited-some-day-i-wouldnt-be-surprised/

Labels:


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

 

A few questions (and answers) about the 2013 Canadian UFO Survey


In a Facebook MUFON group, noted American ufologist Curt Collins posted some questions to me about the 2013 Canadian UFO Survey. He has given me permission to put his questions and my answers in the Ufology Research blog. Most of this is from March 23 to 25, 2014.

Curt: I see the witnesses’ data is categorized in several ways, but had a few questions: First, is there an index or subcategory just for sightings where the witness unambiguously reports seeing a flying vehicle? If not, is there any way to extract that?

Me: Do you mean a witness seeing a structured object rather than just a light?

Curt: Exactly! At least, in their opinion, it absolutely cannot be natural and unlikely to be manmade.

Me: The data points or categories for each case were developed originally as a way of quickly coding the textual information available on the report. They were actually developed as far back as the late 1970s, when I was typing UFO data onto keypunch cards (yes, I'm THAT old), which were limited in characters. Back then, I think we were at 80 characters, not 140 like Twitter! We had to decide what information could be easily coded and what information was available for the majority of reports. After sorting through many hundreds of cases, we arrived at the lowest common denominators available from all sources of UFO case data.

We used some of the coding of the original UFOCAT and Hynek's classification system. Then I added a few more. When we finally started the Survey in 1989, we had NL and DD, but I added ND (Nocturnal Disc) for nocturnal structured objects that were more than simply lights in the sky. The "Disc" designation is a matter of convenience, since "Daylight Discs" are not discs all the time, either, and could be other shapes. We also include a data point for "shape," so that if a witness sees a structured object that could be called a "craft," it would be a ND. Also, the category of Shape would provide additional info about what was observed. Plus, there's the Comments at the end of the line, where a note about other characteristics of the observed object can be included.

The other point is that many witnesses have virtually no ability to discern whether they have seen a structured vehicle or not. A case in point is the term "Orb" which can be used to describe something that is spherical, but also simply to refer to a light without any shape or form.

Not to mention the natural ability to "fill in" a black object between three or more lights in the sky, thus creating a "triangle" where there is none.

Curt: Good answer about the data sorting―I feel like I've had a backstage tour! I understand about witness reliability problems, but was wondering just what percentage of reports were of Unidentified Flying Vehicles, since the press seems to think that ALL of them are!

Me: I use "PS" for "Point Source" to indicate objects that don't have a discernable structure for coding. A huge majority of NLs are PSs. I think most DDs are not point sources, although there are exceptions.

Curt: Some researchers feel the "UFO" label is contaminated and use UAP or UAO to distance their work from "flying saucer" silliness. What term to you prefer and why?

Me: I think it's important to realize that "UFO" was adopted by the USAF to distinguish it from the silliness to begin with. A number of other terms were proposed over the years, too. My favourite was TOPA, or "Transient Optical Phenomenon of the Atmosphere," proposed by a scientist in a paper. The reality is that even if we start using UAP regularly, the media will still invoke aliens at every opportunity. Also, the public is familiar with “UFO” and even if they assume aliens, at least we don't have to explain as much as if we changed the term. Also, having to explain that “U” means “Unidentified” gives us the opportunity to educate the public and media about what we mean, so I'd still prefer to use UFO.

Curt: If you asked a random group to draw two pictures, first one of a UFO and the second of a Flying Saucer, what do you think you'd get?

Me: This reminds me of the experiment with UFO abductees done by Stuart Appelle comparing drawings made by non-abductees with those made by "real" abductees. Don Dondieri thought the drawings were totally different, suggesting UFO abductees were real, although some debunkers thought the drawings were similar enough to say imaginary UFO abductions were just as "real."

This also reminds me of an experiment I did using drawings made by kids in a grade school many years ago. I had been contacted by parents of two kids and their teacher because the two kids said they had been frightened by a large UFO that flew low over their heads one night while they were playing in the schoolyard. I had permission to talk with the kids, and then because all the other kids in the class were excited about the story, was asked to give a presentation to the entire class about UFOs. I took the opportunity to ask all of the class, including the two who had "really" seen the UFO, to draw a UFO.

The result was interesting. The kids all drew fantastic images of aliens and elaborate spacecraft, including some nice artwork of Darth Vader and assorted robots. But the two kids who had "really" seen the UFO drew the UFO as they had seen it: a dull grey cigar in a black sky.

So my guess would be that asking groups to draw UFOs and flying saucers would result in identical images, although many who were asked to draw a "saucer" would draw a disc. Now, if you asked the two groups to draw an "alien spaceship" and a UFO, they would be identical.


Curt: Thanks for the answer. I'll have to look up that [Appelle] experiment. It's also interesting about your school children drawing results. I don't think people seeing UFOs on television makes them see them in the sky, but sometimes it can cause them to interpret a genuine indistinct object into a flying saucer. Now, I wish I'd asked for a lab and human test subjects for Christmas. I'd like to do some experiments...

Labels:


Tuesday, March 11, 2014

 

The 2013 Canadian UFO Survey

The 2013 Canadian UFO Survey is published on the website:

http://survey.canadianuforeport.com

Data for the year is available there, as are previous years' Surveys and many charts and graphs.

The text is presented below.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++


*****
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
/ .................. \
=========================
+        +
++       ++


The 2013
CANADIAN UFO SURVEY:
an analysis of UFO reports
in Canada

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



Compiled by
Geoff Dittman
and
Chris A. Rutkowski
with
Ashley Kircher



Data Sources:

Yukon UFO
UFO Updates
Para-Researchers of Ontario
National UFO Reporting Center
Filers Files
UFOINFO
UFO*BC
UFOS North West
Alberta UFO Study Group
Mutual UFO Network
Houston, BC, Centre for UFO Research
Ufology Research
Transport Canada
National Defence and the Canadian Forces
YouTube
NOUFORS
PSICan
Sightings.com
GARPAN
Centre d'Études des OVNIs



Editor
Chris Rutkowski, Ufology Research


Data Entry, Compilation and Analyses
Geoff Dittman, Ufology Research
Ashley Kircher, Ufology Research



Published by
Ufology Research
Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada

© 2014 Ufology Research


The 2013 Canadian UFO Survey

Overview

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. No comparable studies are currently produced by any other research group in North America. Similar programs exist in several other countries such as Sweden, where UFO report data is analysed by the Archives for UFO Research, and in Italy by Centro Italiano Studi Ufologici.

2013 marked the 25th year of collecting and analysing Canadian UFO report data by Ufology Research. A 25-year compilation and analyses of a quarter-century of Canadian UFO data is in preparation.

With some gaps in data, tables of most Canadian UFO reports included in the annual surveys from 1989 to the present are available online at: http://survey.canadianuforeport.com



The 2013 Canadian UFO Survey: Summary of Results

·         There were 1,180 UFO sightings reported in Canada in 2013, or about three each day. 

·         The number of cases in 2013 is the second-highest number of UFO sightings recorded in Canada during the last 25 years.

·         The 1,180 UFO cases reported in 2013 is much less than the peak year of 2012, when almost 2,000 reports were recorded. We suspect this was an anomaly, and likely due to many people excited about the so-called “end of the world” in 2012 according to the Mayan Calendar.

·         In 2013, Ontario had more than 40 per cent of all Canadian UFO reports.

·         In 2013, about 14 per cent of all UFO reports were classified as unexplained.

·         The typical UFO sighting lasted approximately 13 minutes in 2013.

The study found that more than half of all UFO sightings were of simple lights in the sky. Witnesses also reported point sources of light, 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.
Numbers of reported UFO sightings remain high. Several theories for this can be suggested: more UFOs are present and physically observable by witnesses; more secret or classified military exercises and overflights are occurring over populated areas; more people are unaware of the nature of conventional or natural objects in the sky; more people are taking the time to observe their surroundings; more people are able to report their sightings with easier access to the Internet and portable technology; or even that the downturn in the economy is leading to an increased desire by some people to look skyward for assistance.
Although the largest percentage of reported UFOs is simply lights in the night sky, a small number are objects with definite shapes observed within the witnesses’ frame of reference.
Popular opinion to the contrary, there is no incontrovertible evidence that some UFO cases involve extraterrestrial contact. The continued reporting of UFOs by the public and the yearly increase in numbers of UFO reports suggests a need for further examination of the phenomenon by social, medical and/or physical scientists.

For further information, contact:
Ufology Research via e-mail: canadianuforeport@hotmail.com
Twitter: @ufologyresearch





UFO Reports in Canada

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

Year
Number
Average
1989
141
141.0
1990
194
167.5
1991
165
166.7
1992
223
180.8
1993
489
242.4
1994
189
233.5
1995
183
226.3
1996
258
230.3
1997
284
236.2
1998
194
232.0
1999
259
234.5
2000
263
236.8
2001
374
247.4
2002
483
264.2
2003
673
291.5
2004
882
328.4
2005
769
354.3
2006
738
375.8
2007
794
399.8
2008
1004
430.0
2009*


2010
968
438.2
2011
986
461.9
2012
1981
525.3
2013
1180
551.4
Total
13786




*― Data for 2009 has not yet been added to the database.

The number of UFO reports per year has varied, although there has been a general trend towards a steady increase in yearly UFO report numbers over 25 years, with spikes in some years such as 1993, 2008 and 2013, when there were almost 2,000 reports in one year. Although there may be a perceived notion that UFOs are not being reported with as much frequency as in the past, this is not true. 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.

Method

Data for each case was obtained by Ufology Research from participating researchers across Canada or through data mining of known websites devoted to UFO reports. The information then was coded by members of Ufology Research and entered into a database and statistically analysed.

An example of the coding key is as follows:

Example: 2013  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.




Analyses of the Data

Distribution of UFO Reports Across Canada



In 2013, Ontario had about 41 per cent of the total number of UFO sightings reported in Canada, the most reports of any province, and exactly the same percentage as in both 2011 and 2012. British Columbia was second, with about 25 per cent of the total. If UFO reporting was simply a factor of population, one would expect percentages of 37 per cent for Ontario and 13 per cent for BC.

TABLE 1
     Distribution of UFO Reports by Province


NT
NU
YT
BC
AB
SK
MB
ON
PQ
NB
NS
PI
NF
1989
1
0
0
15
16
18
22
34
28
1
3
0
3
1990
2
0
1
76
9
10
20
21
36
7
5
3
4
1991
0
0
1
59
22
7
6
30
16
9
7
1
4
1992
1
0
3
90
8
9
23
56
10
9
3
0
4
1993
5
0
0
157
56
93
74
51
32
3
3
1
7
1994
3
0
3
14
39
8
10
51
34
6
9
0
6
1995
4
0
0
45
10
11
48
41
20
0
1
0
1
1996
35
0
0
43
10
11
39
63
45
1
9
0
1
1997
22
0
8
99
11
5
32
72
24
1
6
1
3
1998
2
0
22
58
6
14
15
59
15
1
0
1
0
1999
0
0
20
118
19
1
6
79
8
1
0
1
6
2000
0
0
26
102
17
8
19
53
22
0
15
0
0
2001
1
5
18
123
40
12
20
87
34
5
21
2
6
2002
0
2
20
176
51
6
36
128
34
4
23
0
3
2003
2
1
16
304
76
19
25
150
49
4
21
2
4
2004
3
1
2
247
99
45
112
254
64
21
23
2
9
2005
1
0
3
209
90
77
43
214
77
15
16
4
12
2006
2
8
1
209
55
98
54
188
76
12
25
1
5
2007
6
0
7
192
66
36
44
329
93
24
31
2
6
2008
0
1
6
272
157
41
52
334
62
28
34
2
10
2009*













2010
0
0
3
204
85
30
88
405
71
25
42
5
9
2011
2
1
3
216
101
31
81
406
77
27
31
2
5
2012
0
0
6
399
323
55
124
822
124
41
61
2
23
2013
4
0
2
298
129
33
65
480
86
32
31
2
8

NT
NU
YT
BC
AB
SK
MB
ON
PQ
NB
NS
PI
NF
Total
95
19
171
3770
1496
663
1075
4428
1151
278
420
34
140


In addition, geographical names of UFO sighting locations were examined for trends. Many cities were found to have multiple reports, and these are noted in the following table. Large metropolitan areas include their suburbs.

Canadian Cities With Most UFO Reports in 2012

Rank
City
Province
Number of Reports
1
Vancouver
BC
116
2
Toronto
ON
111
3
Winnipeg
MB
39
4
Calgary
AB
37
5
Hamilton
ON
36




Metropolitan Areas



Vancouver
(Incl. New Westminister, W. Van., N. Van., Burnaby, Surrey, Abbottsford, Port Coquitlam, Langley, N. Surrey, N. Langley, Richmond, Delta, N. Delta, Coquitlam, Port Moody)

116
Toronto
(Incl. Mississauga, Brampton, Scarborough, Oshawa, Whitby, Ajax, Pickering, Etobicoke, Newmarket, Richmond Hill, Markham, Oakville)

111





Monthly Trends in UFO Reports

Monthly breakdowns of reports during each year tend to show slightly different patterns. UFO reports are generally thought to 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 2013, July and August numbers were again high, but report numbers were unusually high in January as well.



J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
1989
13
9
6
9
5
9
5
5
12
32
27
9
1990
17
7
6
47
10
10
9
47
15
16
10
0
1991
13
7
17
12
7
12
16
25
16
12
11
17
1992
15
16
27
16
22
16
23
19
11
16
21
21
1993
59
15
20
22
14
38
27
49
41
152
24
21
1994
16
12
15
21
15
37
19
8
15
10
7
13
1995
14
12
13
9
9
10
28
33
28
11
11
5
1996
37
18
20
16
8
20
30
32
10
22
30
11
1997
19
11
31
29
17
13
29
29
22
16
26
37
1998
3
4
8
5
9
13
16
40
45
35
7
4
1999
8
20
22
7
31
10
27
36
30
29
30
7
2000
21
17
15
21
12
11
19
46
20
44
15
19
2001
36
19
33
25
17
26
51
81
25
17
27
16
2002
31
54
41
28
36
44
73
74
42
26
19
14
2003
41
46
46
46
31
30
131
102
46
64
43
47
2004
59
53
72
68
82
97
96
113
83
46
56
53
2005
36
59
81
59
45
50
96
123
70
56
47
45
2006
33
43
41
66
65
108
113
113
61
36
20
29
2007
45
35
95
76
56
90
80
105
94
64
50
41
2008
64
65
66
58
81
71
148
128
114
82
94
33
2009












2010
40
30
34
38
64
78
196
115
94
106
82
86
2011
94
64
67
63
76
69
102
142
97
91
48
72
2012
109
136
150
180
166
140
272
283
194
151
81
116
2013
117
43
69
53
122
153
156
146
83
98
63
68

J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
Totals
952
802
995
979
1001
1166
1774
1915
1274
1226
854
792


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. Proportionally, Daylight Discs increased significantly in 2013, but most cases still were Nocturnal Lights.
Just under two per cent of all reported UFO cases in 2013 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 is based not on the vast majority of UFO cases but on the very 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 what are actually being reported as UFOs.






TABLE 3
Report Types (Modified Hynek Classifications)


NL
ND
DD
C1
C2
C3
C4
EV
RD
PH
1989
84
20
16
10
7
0
2
2
0
0
1990
141
24
15
2
1
0
4
3
0
0
1991
110
26
13
7
4
1
2
0
1
1
1992
136
44
20
15
5
2
3
0
0
1
1993
372
77
26
8
2
1
1
1
0
0
1994/95
234
78
28
21
1
1
5
1
0
0
1996
170
40
27
8
3
4
1
2
0
0
1997
145
62
52
4
2
5
8
4
0
1
1998
115
23
25
6
1
0
0
19
0
3
1999
163
44
37
3
7
1
0
0
0
0
2000
179
31
26
4
2
2
0
0
0
3
2001
218
80
55
8
1
3
3
0
0
0
2002
293
94
76
8
5
0
1
0
0
2
2003
431
152
74
5
5
3
2
0
0
0
2004
520
203
136
7
6
2
3
0
0
3
2005
424
169
149
9
5
3
2
0
0
1
2006
508
65
85
12
1
4
1
0
0
21
2007
413
244
153
12
7
4
1
0
0
*
2008
442
353
175
10
7
2
0
0
0
8
2009*










2010
467
324
132
14
9
0
4
5
0
13
2011
559
313
92
15
4
1
0
0
0
1
2012
1070
673
155
32
8
1
2
0
0
29
2013
631
333
145
9
4
3
3
5

4

NL
ND
DD
C1
C2
C3
C4
EV
RD
PH
Totals
7829
2871
1585
198
86
47
45
71
1
64



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.

The category of PH indicates the sighting was entirely photographic, without any actual object seen visually. Many reports listed as NL or ND or DD may also have associated photos or video, so this should not be considered exclusive. 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 listed in the database, but not in the table above.

(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” 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. 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.
           


Time
2010
2011
2012
2013
12:00-12:59
8
7
7
7
13:00-13:59
12
9
8
12
14:00-14:59
7
8
14
13
15:00-15:59
13
7
14
3
16:00-16:59
15
7
15
19
17:00-17:59
24
19
22
23
18:00-18:59
33
26
42
35
19:00-19:59
54
63
84
64
20:00-20:59
78
96
153
83
21:00-21:59
107
114
311
141
22:00-22:59
140
148
363
180
23:00-23:59
132
109
217
144
00:00-00:59
53
50
129
116
01:00-01:59
48
38
66
27
02:00-02:59
30
27
55
28
03:00-03:59
22
19
45
22
04:00-04:59
11
14
33
7
05:00-05:59
7
15
20
9
06:00-06:59
17
18
20
15
07:00-07:59
7
6
14
9
08:00-08:59
5
1
7
3
09:00-09:59
5
1
4
9
10:00-10:59
7
2
8
11
11:00-11:59
12
3
9
7




Duration

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 an 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 2013 was 13.5 minutes, similar to 2012 when the average duration was about 15 minutes. These significant lengths of time suggest some simple explanations. Previous analyses have shown that long-duration sightings tend to occur in the early morning hours, from about midnight until 6:00 a.m.
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.

Colour

In cases where colours of an object were reported by witnesses, the most common colour in 2013 was orange, similar to previous years. The next most common colours were red, white and “multi-coloured.” 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 became popular during the past few years. 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 flash a variety of colours when seen low on the horizon. Aircraft also frequently are described as having more than one colour of light, such as flashing coloured wing lights. However, seen from a distance, aircraft will often be visible only as moving white lights.


Colour
2010
2011
2012
2013





White
162
164
233
107
Multicoloured
95
82
162
57
Orange
158
219
546
284
Yellow
26
41
57
37
Red
77
103
209
119
Green
32
21
69
38
Silver
21
14
21
16
Black
26
24
39
28
Blue
30
16
47
40
Grey
8
7
20
8
Brown
0
1
4
5
Pink
2
3
2
2
Purple
1
1
5
0


Witnesses

The average number of witnesses per case is approximately 2.00. This value has fluctuated between a high of 2.4 in 1996 to as low as 1.4 in 1990. In 2011, the average number of witnesses per case was 1.74, and the value in 2012 remained about the same, at 1.79. In 2013, the average number of witnesses per sighting was 1.71.
This indicates that the typical UFO experience 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.


Shape

Witnesses’ descriptions of the shapes of UFOs vary greatly. In 2013, about 54 per cent were of “point sources”—that is, “starlike” objects or distant lights, about the same as previous years. The classic “flying saucer” or disc-shaped object comprised only around five per cent of all UFO reports in 2013, contrary to popular opinion. Even the “triangle” shape, which some ufologists have suggested has supplanted the classic “saucer,” was only five percent of the total in 2013.
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.



Shape
2010
2011
2012
2013





Ball/Globe/Round/Orb/Sphere
186
144
296
148
Fireball
61
61
158
65
Boomerang/Crescent/Chevron/V/U
18
7
24
16
Cigar/Cylinder
35
43
47
22
Disk/Saucer
33
42
37
55
Irregular
130
97
223
79
Oval/Egg/Elliptical
15
24
30
29
Point Source
440
554
1076
640
Triangle
42
43
62
58
Diamond

2
1
8
Rectangle
0
3
1
16



Strangeness



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.
The numbers of UFO reports according to 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 2013 was 3.67, up from the 2012 average of 3.21, where 1 is considered not strange at all and 9 is considered exceptionally unusual. Most UFOs reported are of objects which do not greatly stretch the imagination. Hollywood-style flying saucers are, in reality, relatively uncommon in UFO reports. The overall Strangeness rating of Canadian UFO reports has been sliding slightly over time.

Reliability

The average Reliability rating of Canadian UFO reports in 2013 was 3.8, down significantly from an average of 4.6 in 2012. In most years, there are approximately the same number of higher quality cases as those of low quality. However, in 2013, more reports had minimal information on the witness, little or no investigation and incomplete data or description of the object(s) observed.  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 likely comprise only a small fraction of all UFO data, a fact that makes posted 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 in a later section of this study. 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.


Sources

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.


About 32 per cent of Canadian cases in 2013 were reported to the large organization known as the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON), which has a good online reporting system. Traditionally, the lion’s share of reports used as data came through Sightings.com, which has been relaying UFO cases reported through the former Houston, BC, Centre for UFOs (HBCCUFO), with about 32 per cent in 2010 and 35 per cent in 2011, but up to 45 per cent in 2012 and down to 24 per cent in 2013. The decline in 2013 was due to HBCCUFO scaling down its activity.  
In 2013, about nine per cent of the total cases were obtained through the private and non-profit National UFO Reporting Center in the USA. Like MUFON, NUFORC has a toll-free telephone number 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 2013 were sent directly to Ufology Research.
Less than one per cent of all cases came as a result of information obtained through Transport Canada and the Department of National Defence.
It should be noted that the preparation of this Survey is becoming quite challenging. Few UFO investigators or researchers actually submit case data to UFOROM anymore, 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 UFO investigation has nearly become extinct. 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.

Evaluation (Explanations)

There were 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 Evaluation for 2013 cases was similar to results from previous years, with the percentage of unexplained cases less than 15 per cent of the total. There were a few slight differences in 2013 compared with previous years; the cases labelled as having Possible or Probable explanations were at a high of 67 per cent, while the cases considered as having Insufficient Information for an explanation were at a low of 17 per cent. Together, however, they comprised a similar percentage of reports as in previous years. The difference in 2013 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 extensive 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. Cases are also re-evaluated periodically as additional data or information is brought to attention or obtained through further investigation.
The level and quality of UFO report investigation varies because there are no explicit and rigourous 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.






TABLE 4
Evaluation of Canadian UFO Data

%





Explained
Insufficient Evidence
Probable
Unexplained
1989
0.00%
52.50%
33.30%
14.20%
1990
0.00%
46.40%
40.20%
13.40%
1991
1.20%
48.50%
41.80%
8.50%
1992
8.00%
37.00%
33.00%
22.00%
1993
31.50%
34.80%
23.50%
10.20%
1994/95
19.10%
33.30%
35.20%
12.40%
1996
9.30%
40.70%
33.70%
16.30%
1997
6.00%
37.30%
43.00%
13.70%
1998
5.10%
38.70%
44.80%
11.30%
1999
3.80%
31.50%
51.90%
12.70%
2000
8.75%
35.74%
42.59%
12.93%
2001
5.88%
34.76%
44.12%
15.24%
2002
2.48%
39.75%
39.75%
18.01%
2003
16.34%
24.67%
42.50%
16.49%
2004
8.62%
22.68%
53.17%
15.53%
2005
12.09%
25.36%
47.85%
14.69%
2006
7.07%
44.84%
36.28%
11.82%
2007
2.03%
32.06%
50.12%
15.78%
2008
2.69%
27.99%
59.46%
9.86%
2009*




2010
1.96%
38.64%
51.34%
8.06%
2011
3.55%
40.67%
44.83%
10.95%
2012
3.08%
39.90%
50.55%
7.47%
2013
1.61%
17.29%
66.53%
14.58%




Explained
Insufficient Evidence
Probable
Unexplained
1989
0
74
47
20
1990
0
90
78
26
1991
2
80
69
14
1992
17
83
74
49
1993
154
170
115
50
1994/95
71
124
131
46
1996
24
105
87
42
1997
17
106
122
39
1998
10
75
87
22
1999
10
82
135
32
2000
23
94
112
34
2001
22
130
165
57
2002
12
192
192
87
2003
110
166
286
111
2004
76
200
469
137
2005
93
195
368
113
2006
52
330
267
87
2007
17
268
419
132
2008
27
281
597
99
2009*




2010
19
374
497
78
2011
35
401
442
108
2012
61
771
1002
148
2013
19
204
785
172

871
4595
6546
1703


In 2013, the percentage of Unknowns was 14.5 per cent. There were 172 Unknowns out of 1,180 total cases in 2013.
If we look only at the Unknowns with a Strangeness of 6 or greater and a Reliability rating of 6 or greater, we are left with 48 high-quality Unknowns in 2013 (about four per cent of the total). This is in line with previous studies, such as USAF Blue Book, which found three to four per cent of their cases were "excellent" Unknowns. As it is, these 48 Canadian cases in 2013 can be reduced further by eliminating those in which investigation is not complete or details not made available for outside evaluation.
It should be emphasized again that even high-quality Unknowns do not imply alien visitation. Each case may still have an explanation following further investigation. And of those that remain unexplained, they may remain unexplained, but still are not incontrovertible proof of extraterrestrial intervention or some mysterious natural phenomenon.
The interpretation of the 172 Unknowns in 2013 is that these cases were among the most challenging of all the reports received. It should be noted that most UFO cases go unreported, and that there may be ten times as many UFO sightings that go unreported as those which get reported to public, private or military agencies. Furthermore, it should be noted that some cases with lower reliability ratings suffer only from incomplete investigations, and that they may well be more mysterious than those on the list of Unknowns. And, above all, these cases are not proof of extraterrestrial visitation.
            The increase in the numbers of UFO reports with time likely does not have a simple explanation. It could be related to a growing awareness within the general population that there are agencies which collect UFO reports. It could be that there really are more UFOs physically present in the sky. It could be that the collection of UFO data is becoming more efficient. It could be that there are more private websites allowing or inviting people to report their UFO sightings. While media have been noted as playing a definite role in UFO waves (a national increase in UFO sightings), media coverage of UFO reports has significantly declined over the past decade while the number of reports has risen. Perhaps a cultural factor is at work as well, where “aliens” and UFOs are now well-entrenched within the societal mindset and are accepted as more probable than fiction. This question by itself is deserving of scientific study.








Most Interesting Canadian “Unknowns” in 2013

The following are those Canadian UFO reports in 2013 which had a Reliability Rating greater than 6, a Strangeness Rating greater than 6, were also assigned an Evaluation of Unknown, and for which details are available for evaluation.


January 8, 2013                     5:30 pm          Musquodoboit, NS
Two children had been sledding on a small hill when they saw a large object coming towards them over the trees. They heard a beeping noise and watched the object shaped like “a massive hotel” with protrusions and windows flew over a nearby house and out of sight.

January 25, 2013                   9:23 pm          Tsuu T’ina Reserve, AB
Strange lights were observed south of her house by a witness who took photos with her camera. After about five minutes the lights took off into the sky and then several military helicopters were seen flying in the area. The incident was investigated by police.

May 4, 2013                           2:45 am           St-Jerome, PQ
A witness was on his balcony using his telescope to look at a star when a bright flash lit up his surroundings. He looked up to see a large rectangular object moving over the treetops and making a whistling sound. After a few seconds, it disappeared.

July 13, 2013                          9:00 pm          Notre-Dame-de Ile-Perrot, PQ
A witness saw a red glowing sphere moving horizontally over trees on the horizon, then it moved vertically upwards and disappeared. It seemed to have “a kind of 'structure” and was apparently solid.

September 27, 2013               8:51 pm          Winnipeg, MB
An air traffic controller saw four lights in a V-shaped formation moving together silently overhead. The witness said the lights were at an altitude of about one or two thousand feet and were heading slowly northwest. Because there was no visible aircraft beacon, the witness did not believe the lights were on an ordinary aircraft.

September 28, 2013               8:13 pm          Portage la Prairie, MB
A former helicopter pilot and two other people watched as many as 50 orange lights moving in the southwest sky in pairs following the same trajectory south to north. They watched the procession for at least five minutes.




January 8, 2013                     5:30 pm          Musquodoboit, NS



January 25, 2013                   9:23 pm          Tsuu T’ina Reserve, AB











Appendix

In addition to the six high-quality unknowns listed, one additional case was thought to have significant merit to be mentioned:

During a snowstorm on February 23, 2013, around 10:00 pm in St-Georges-de-Beauce, PQ, a woman was washing her dishes while looking out her kitchen window. She saw three orange lights coming from afar, and called to her husband to come look with her outside. When the lights passed overhead, she took two photos and then filmed a short video with her phone’s camera. The lights seemed to change shape and were “morphing.” As they watched, another small flashing light joined the three and sped away with them towards the northwest.






Labels:


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?