Tree Stump in Urquhart Bay Could Be to Blame for Seventh Sighting of 'Loch Ness Monster' in 2019

A still image of ‘Nessie’ from the video recorded by Gloria Davidson.  (The AIO Entertainment / YouTube)

A still image of ‘Nessie’ from the video recorded by Gloria Davidson. (The AIO Entertainment / YouTube)

Gloria and Ian Davidson were on vacation in the Scottish Highlands on June 11th when they claimed to have spotted something in Loch Ness that was "definitely black" and "seemed to have a neck and head”, reported the Scottish Daily Record.

"We have been to Loch Ness many times, but never seen the monster before," Gloria said. "But I always like to look at the loch—I can't imagine how many pairs of eyes are on that loch at any one time. But I have spent periods looking at the water, because you never know."

"But at around 1:30 p.m., just after we had lunch, my husband was driving and I was in the passenger seat gazing out at the loch. Then I suddenly saw something and I said to Ian 'there's something down there.' He turned around and we got out of the car and there it was," she explained. "We were very excited. It was about 300 meters away and definitely black. It seemed to have a neck and head. I could definitely see its back and it was a fair size. It disappeared after a minute beneath the water."

"I had hoped there was something in the loch—you always want to believe in something. All I can say is that we saw something we cannot explain. But it was animate and it was definitely not a seal," added Gloria.

The object spotted by the couple was in Loch Ness’ Urquhart Bay, and was the seventh sighting of the season according to Gary Campbell, recorder of the Official Loch Ness Monster Sightings Register.

"This is our seventh sighting of the year and these are all very credible sightings," Campbell said. "It is clearly Loch Ness and clearly unexplained. In terms of Nessie videos it's also very clear and we still don't know what it is. It all adds to the mystery."

"But do these latest sightings explain the Loch Ness mystery? No,” he added. “Do they add to the weight of evidence that there is something happening that is unexplained? Yes."

The location of the sighting in Urquhart Bay has many skeptics speculating that the object in question wasn’t Nessie at all, but rather a tree stump sticking out of the water. The brevity of the Davidson’s video and the fact that no movement was captured would seem to support this claim.

This still from a 2017 video in Urquhart Bay was thought by many to feature a tree stump.  (Rob Jones)

This still from a 2017 video in Urquhart Bay was thought by many to feature a tree stump. (Rob Jones)

This sighting came less than two weeks after the completion of a study that resulted in Neil Gemmell, a New Zealand scientist and professor at the University of Otago, announcing that “there are a few things” about his team’s findings in Loch Ness that “are a bit surprising.”

Gemmell's study involved gathering water samples from multiple locations and at different depths of the loch to scan for bits of animal DNA, and then working to identify it. The samples were sent to labs in New Zealand, Australia, Denmark, and France which used large sequence databases to compare the DNA found in Loch Ness with the majority of known living things. This was done to help distinguish and identify any potentially unknown genetic material.

"Is there anything deeply mysterious? Hmm. It depends what you believe. Is there anything startling? There are a few things that are a bit surprising," said Gemmell.

Gemmell went on to say that the results might support one of the “main monster hypotheses”.

"We've tested each one of the main monster hypotheses and three of them we can probably say aren't right and one of them might be,” he said.

Popular explanations for the Loch Ness Monster include that it is a population of plesiosaurs that survived extinction, a giant sturgeon, an enormous sea snail, or misidentified otters and debris in the loch; although other hypotheses include more paranormal components, it is unlikely that Gemmell, a scientific materialist, would be investigating those as a possibility.

Gemmell later said that a comprehensive announcement of results from the study would likely be made in early September 2019.

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