Date: April 11, 2006
From: Joan Woodward, Animal Reaction Specialist
Animal Reaction Feature:
A dog that was normally outdoors at night and that normally barked at and chased any animal that came near the house, began barking at 3:30 AM. This barking was unusual, described as a “scared” bark, causing the witness to get up and see what was happening.
The dog was barking at a glowing object and would not leave the porch. Normally in that situation, the dog would take off after whatever had attracted its attention. The witness stated that this night the dog was clearly afraid and continued barking from the porch and would not leave the porch.
The witness also noted he heard cattle bellowing on a hill, and when the light moved off, he heard neighbor’s dogs start barking. [No information was given on the location of the cattle or of the neighbor’s house relative to witness and the unknown light.—jw]
The object was described as egg shaped or oblong, about the size of an average car. It had a 3-dimensional appearance, “..like you could look through it, or right into it.” The outside was orange and toward the center it was brighter and a slightly different color. The colors were described as similar to setting sun but not dark enough to be considered red.
The night was very quiet with no wind. The witness made an effort to hear any sound from the object but heard nothing. He noted that even when the object started moving, he still could hear nothing.
The object, judging by a tree in front of it, was estimated to be 20 feet or less from the ground and was in the area of a clearing. It remained still and in view for about 10 minutes. Then the witness’s wife, watching from indoors while he watched from the porch, turned on house lights. At that point, the object flickered slightly and started moving away slowly and steadily, maintaining its low altitude. It speed was estimated as 5 mph and it was moving in a northwest direction.. The object was lost to sight after after 20 seconds as it became obscured by trees. The witness heard the neighbor’s dogs start barking about 3 minutes later.
[The only direction indicated was that the glowing object disappeared moving to the NW. Using YourSky (fourmilab.ch/yoursky/) to see if any bright objects were near the horizon at the time of the sighting, I found Mars was roughly 35° in the SE sky, unlikely a factor. However, the 97% illuminated moon was due to set 4:05 AM (verified with USNO) and would have been very near the horizon SW horizon. I cannot say the setting moon was or was not involved in this sighting without directions and knowledge of the topography. The witness reports the dog was reacting in the direction of the glowing object, suggesting something was happening other than the moon setting. However, it is always possible that the dog was reacting to something other than what the witness was watching.—jw]
SKYLOOK, No. 69, August 1973, page 13 (attached).
SKYLOOK, No. 70, September 1973, pages 14-15 (attached).
SKYLOOK, No. 69, August 1973, page 13:
After reading the
report in the
SKYLOOK, No. 70, September 1973, page 14-15:
The sighting took place at 3:30 AM and lasted about ten minutes. We quote Mr. Stice when he was asked how he happened to observe the object. “Well, we were sleeping at the time. Our dog started barking. Of course, he’ll bark every night if an animal comes up close to the house. But he had a strange bark, just a scared bark. That’s the main reason I got up to see what was going on. He wouldn’t leave the porch area, and he kept barking at that light. He just stood there and barked. Normally, if there’s something out there, he’ll just take off after it. But he was scared and you could tell it. The dog is always left outside of the house at night. I didn’t go any farther than the porch and my wife stuck her head out of the door just once. Other than that she watched from behind the door.”
Asked to describe
what they had seen, Mr. Stice said: “After the dog
woke us up, we went to the front door and opened it. We looked out and didn’t see anything at the
time. I went back to bed myself. My wife saw the light over there. Then I got up and as soon as I saw it, I just
knew what it was. There wasn’t any doubt
in my mind. There wasn’t any noise, and
there wasn’t any wind, just peaceful, quiet.
It was in view for a long time.
I’d say around ten minutes. It
was about the size of the average car.
It wasn’t round and it was really oval.
It was kind of egg shaped or kind of oblong in shape. When it left, it moved in a northwest
direction and approximately three minutes or so later, our neighbor’s dogs
started barking. I immediately
“As for the height above the ground, the newspaper said it was 100 feet from the ground but that was wrong. I estimated this because it was like 20 feet or less above the ground. I estimated this because it was about half the height of a tree from the ground. It was located behind a tree and this made it good to judge how close it was to the ground. There is a clearing where it was setting.
“The color of this thing was hard to describe. It wasn’t quite the color of the sun as it goes down and yet it wasn’t dark enough to be red. It seemed to have a different color toward the center. It seemed to be more of an orange around the outside of it. It had a three dimensional look to it. It was brighter on the inside than it was on the outside.”
Asked how the object appeared as it left the area, Stice said: “That was really strange. When it left, it looked like it just went straight without raising or without lowering. It just seemed to go straight, well, just a slight rise maybe. Straight through the trees to the northwest. It flew at the same level or near to it as it had been all the time I watched it. It didn’t move faster than five miles per hour.
“It left when my wife began turning on the lights inside the house. I was standing on the porch and she was standing just inside the front door. It did seem to flicker or maybe flutter a little when it began to move off. Then, real slow it started moving out. I kept listening close for any sound, but there wasn’t any sound at all. It moved away at a slow and steady speed and it disappeared. Once it started to leave, it took about 20 seconds before I could not longer see it, as it was far behind the trees. And when I say it flickered when, or just before it moved off, I mean like your car’s headlights will do when your engine is idling and then you step on the gas.”
He also added that “the cows were bellowing on the hill” along with the dog barking. The night was calm with clear skies and a slight breeze out of the east.
Editor’s Note: One gets the “feel” of the situation so much better when you have the observer’s own words, and we think Mr. Stice did a fine job of giving us the whole picture. The report forms used to record a sighting have their value, but we greatly prefer the narrative form of reporting. Give us all the details, and we’ll “cut” them at our desk if we have to because of space limitations. Thank you, Joe.