The results of a landmark DNA study at Loch Ness, a pair of wondrous two-headed animals, and a mysterious substance spotted on the far side of the moon were among the strange and unusual stories that popped up on our radar this week.
A story we've been closely following for the last two years came to a conclusion this week when the results of a much-discussed DNA study of Loch Ness were finally revealed. In an announcement on Thursday, geneticist Neil Gemmell explained that the project, which looked for genetic material in 250 water samples taken from the legendary site, found no shark, catfish, nor sturgeon DNA. As such, the study appears to have eliminated those creatures from consideration when it comes to the nature of Nessie and, remarkably, strengthened the case that the 'monster' may be an eel as the water was apparently rife with DNA from the serpentine fish.
An intriguing new space mystery emerged this week when it was revealed that the Chinese space agency's lunar rover had spotted a strange 'gel-like substance' sitting in a crater on the infamous 'Dark Side' of the moon. Described as "significantly different" from the surrounding soil, the puzzling anomaly so excited engineers managing the craft that they convinced their superiors to change the mission plan in order to examine the weird material. While the rover managed to scan the substance with a highly advanced spectrometer, the precise nature of the odd 'gel' has yet to be revealed, although astronomers say that it could be glassiness created when a meteor strikes a rock and melts part of it.
In an appropriate bit of synchronicity, this past week saw a pair of stories celebrating the discovery of two-headed animals. First, on Hilton Head Island in South Carolina, conservationists found a sea turtle sporting two independently operating heads. While the mutant turtle appeared to be a juvenile, we're still waiting on word as to whether or not it was also a ninja. Meanwhile, over in New Jersey, wildlife workers were taken aback when they stumbled upon a two-headed rattlesnake lurking in the state's infamous Pine Bush region.
For more strange and unusual stories from the past week, check out the Coast to Coast AM website.