Dec 15, 2020 I Paul Seaburn

Super Rats, Strange Purple Lights, Gut Brains and More Mysterious News Briefly — December 14, 2020

Mysterious News Briefly -- December 14, 2020

A Sunnyvale, CA, engineer is selling a street-legal jet-powered Volkswagen Beetle – powered by a kerosene-fueled General Electric Model T58-8F -- for the incredibly low price of only $550,000. What it needs is jet-powered windshield wipers for the increase in bugs and bird poop.

Hyundai Motor has agreed to buy an 80% stake in Boston Dynamics, the robot maker famous for Spot, its headless robot dog that can run, climb stairs and do other dog-like acts. Is Hyundai attempting to make sure Spot only chases other brands of cars?

For those who swear by their gut instincts, a new study found that humans have a “gut brain” in their digestive tracts made up of 12 different kinds of neurons. If this means humans can be constipated in their gut brains, it could explain the year 2020.

If ravens can bend their wings that far, they should pat themselves on the back after a new study found that the cognitive capabilities of four-month-old ravens are the same as full-grown chimpanzees and orangutans, with the birds doing extremely well at addition and understanding relative numbers. If only the SAT test allowed students to bring along ‘emotional support’ ravens.

In perhaps the best news to close out 2020 with, new research by Iowa State University finds that consuming wine and cheese together contributes to better cognitive health as you age and may help fight Alzheimer’s disease. Go easy on the crackers – they just contribute to wanting more crackers.

Pest control experts in the UK warn that 2021 will be a good year for vermin but a bad year for Brits as “super rats” there have developed a “hybrid resistance” to many rodenticides. Experts in the U.S. say you can’t vote them out either.

Mysterious purple lights beaming eerie glows into the sky across the Detroit River from Detroit have finally been identified as coming from LED lights in acres of greenhouses growing marijuana in Windsor, Ontario. Now the dilemma – shut them down or demand a discount?

The mysterious deaths of Coho salmon on the U.S. west coast for decades has finally been attributed to a chemical antioxidant known as 6PPD which is used in tires around the world to make them last longer. Salmon may be saved if the chemical can be replaced, but squirrels are probably hoping this leads to a worldwide ban on tires.

Using images made by the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile, Italian astronomer Nicola Napolitano has confirmed the existence of two new Einstein crosses – extremely rare gravitational lensing cross-shaped phenomena that in this case are caused by galaxies and not quasars. All this time, I thought Einstein crosses were special intersections for absentminded geniuses too deep in thought to look both ways.

A pinhole camera made using photographic paper inside a cider can, attached to a dome at University of Hertfordshire’s Bayfordbury Observatory eight years ago and forgotten about has been rediscovered and it now contains the longest photographic exposure ever made – an image of eight full years of the sun crossing the sky. The dome now has a rust ring so not everyone is excited.

Paul Seaburn

Paul Seaburn is the editor at Mysterious Universe and its most prolific writer. He’s written for TV shows such as "The Tonight Show", "Politically Incorrect" and an award-winning children’s program. He's been published in “The New York Times" and "Huffington Post” and has co-authored numerous collections of trivia, puzzles and humor. His “What in the World!” podcast is a fun look at the latest weird and paranormal news, strange sports stories and odd trivia. Paul likes to add a bit of humor to each MU post he crafts. After all, the mysterious doesn't always have to be serious.

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