May 24, 2022 I Paul Seaburn

ET Sex Dreams, Impending Sharkcano, Voting Birds and More Mysterious News Briefly

In a bit of Tolkien pareidolia, a vacation house owner in England found the face of Gandalf the Grey hidden in the floorboards of the cottage she rents out to the public and now challenges guests to find the knotty board which shows a clearly-defined head, eyes, nose, mouth, long beard, flowing locks and a pointy hat. Does this make her The Landlord of the Rings?

A study in the journal iScience reveals that corals in the Northern Red Sea off the coast of Egypt have medicinal properties that bottlenose dolphins take advantage of – they’ve been seen rubbing against the corals to release mucous that heals skin conditions. It’s a good thing they don’t have lips or they’d be breaking off pieces to carry around like lip balm.

A new poll by of 2,000 British adults found that three-quarters of those surveyed believe aliens are already here to romance humans, 20 percent reported having recurring dreams about being abducted for sex and 13 percent actually do it with “sextra-terrestrials” in their dreams. Would this be considered a wet dream or a ‘wait … what?’ dream?

Recent satellite imagery from NASA’s Landsat-9 shows that the underwater Kavachi volcano in the Pacific Ocean is in a highly active phase – and that could cause the large population of hammerheads and silky sharks that hang out there despite the hot temperatures and acidic waters to end up in a ‘sharkcano’ very soon. Which will come first – the real sharkcano or the movie “Shankcano!”?

The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) reports that excavations have confirmed an ancient mine in eastern Wyoming that was allegedly used by humans to produce red ochre 13,000 years ago is now officially the oldest known mine of any kind in the Americas – the red ochre was used by Paleoindians in rituals as well as an antiseptic, sunscreen, vermin repellent, in funerals, and for artistic decoration. Did the women sing about being an ochre miner’s daughter?

A large Dutch study of more than 10,000 people aged 14 to 88 published in the journal Schizophrenia found that hallucinations are more common that once thought -- about 80% reported having hallucinated at least once in their lifetime, half had hallucinated within the past month and 32% within the past week, with auditory hallucinations being the most common type. What about those phantom cellphone vibrations that make you think you got a text?

A study of a variety of species of weavers – songbirds known for their elaborate woven nests -- in sub-Saharan Africa found that those that ate seeds tended to flock together and live in colonies more often than carnivorous weaver species that eat insects, but the researchers aren’t sure why. Perhaps eating insects give weavers worse flatulence than seeds.

A crocodile fossil (a skull and jaw) discovered in East Pisco Basin in Peru is from approximately 7 million years ago, has been named Sacacosuchus cordovai, was about 13 feet long and is a saltwater croc which may provide the best proof to date that crocodiles swam across the Atlantic to South America and then followed the coastline to Peru. This was obviously long before the arrival of humans looking for boots.

Humans aren’t the only species that votes (albeit sporadically) – a new study of jackdaws, small black crows of Europe, Asia and North Africa whose call sounds like “Jack,” found that the birds appear to vote with the intensity of their calls about when to take off in large flocks known as "clatterings." Sounds like the same thing humans do when their plane is mysteriously delayed.

The Doncaster Free Press reports that an 11-year-old boy on a bike ride with his dad in the woods of Black Carr Plantation encountered a large black alien big cat that the father said got close enough to terrify the boy. Get ready for some enterprising company to start selling anti-big-cat helmets and knee pads for bike riders.    

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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