Loch Ness: NOT.  Source:  The Sun
Loch Ness: NOT. Source: The Sun

Earth Observation

Loch Ness Monster On Google Earth?

28 Aug , 2009 by

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As only a British tabloid (and Fox News) could, reports came out this week of the Loch Ness Monster being spotted on Google Earth. “This amazing image on Google Earth could be the elusive proof that the Loch Ness Monster exists,” The Sun reported. Well, for one thing, this doesn’t look *anything* like Nessie. Doesn’t he have a long black neck? And another thing about this: it looks surprisingly like a …. boat. Imagine that, a boat on a lake captured by Google Earth! Astounding!
Close-up view from Google Earth. Look closely and you’ll see the squared off back end of the boat (the stern), the rounded stern bow in front, and the tentacle-looking things are just the boat’s wake. This looks very much like another image of a boat on Loch Ness on Bing (below). Click on the picture to get to the image on Bing and zoom out for the full effect.

Another boat on Loch Ness from Bing.

Another boat on Loch Ness from Bing.


To see it on Google Earth, go to coordinates Latitude 57°12’52.13″N, Longitude 4°34’14.16″W. Take a tour of Loch Ness (it is pretty there!) and you’ll see lots of other suspicious looking white things in the lake that are (gasp!) more boats!

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Nancy Atkinson is currently Universe Today's Contributing Editor. Previously she served as UT's Senior Editor and lead writer, and has worked with Astronomy Cast and 365 Days of Astronomy. Nancy is also a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador.



26 Responses

  1. bonan quao says:

    Alas, the world is filled with stupid people.

  2. paul.swanson says:

    Not to be nitpicky (okay, maybe I am), but the stern is the back end of a boat, not the front. The term for the front of a boat is “bow.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stern

  3. You’re right Paul (I’m obviously a landlubber). Text has been corrected..

  4. Brett says:

    I’m getting so tired of these silly, transparent jabs at Fox News. Please also be sure to announce that it is on ABC News also, as well as a host of other news sites.

    I’d love to know what media bias has to do with how astronomy relates to an absurd picture of nothing of importance.

  5. GeorgiaBracey says:

    But wait, we could use the power of citizen science to keep watch for the monster– Nessie Zoo! Volunteers log in to a website and scan hi-res satellite pics for any sign of something suspicious on Loch Ness. 😀

  6. Hon. Salacious B. Crumb says:

    Could it be an example of EU phenomena, as often professed by Anaconda and the like??

  7. Jon Hanford says:

    GeorgiaBracey may be onto something here. Why not start a ‘Cryptozoologists Zoo’ site along the lines of Galaxy Zoo, and gather all that data into a website for those interested in these ‘sightings’ and leave the rest of the scientific establishment to go about their business. Why not have Fox News host the site (you know, ‘fair and balanced-like’). If not Fox, then maybe the History Channel, Discovery Channel, Science Channel, Animal Planet, etc. :)

  8. DrFlimmer says:

    @ paul and nancy:

    That’s why the heliosphere has a bow shock and not a stern shock 😉

    Btw: ugly monster 😀

  9. David Blackburn says:

    Hows this for a headline: “Lacking the ability to be silly or view things in a fun way, a science blogger writes like a 2 dimension sterotypical science blogger would write on a cheezy Sci-Fi channel movie.” I love this blog!

  10. Jon Hanford says:

    Dr. Flimmer, I always equated a ‘stern shock’ as being informed on a Friday of a surprise test in one of my physics classes on Monday, and, always, little or no time to prepare! :)

  11. DrFlimmer says:

    @ Jon Hanford:

    Seriously, indeed! 😀

  12. Torbjorn Larsson OM says:

    an absurd picture of nothing of importance.

    Um, what? It’s a normal observation by long view photo, not “an absurd picture”.

    The importance in the context of the article seems to be how unreliable uninformed analysis is, and IMHO how much information one can glean by an informed analysis.

    Fox News, famed for its unreliable and uninformed analysis, is a good illustration. It’s important to observe and acknowledge the mayor players that tries to destroy the achievements of the Enlightenment by means such as this.

    [And I dunno what ABC News is, btw. Is this one of these US political thingamajigs, like Fox reputedly is?]

  13. Dave Finton says:

    Torbjorn: While not nearly as outrageous as FoxNews, ABCNews is definitely tabloidish in nature a lot of times, and yes they do have a conservative bent.

  14. pink says:

    Why would anyone have a problem with this article?

    I mean, it IS pretty unnecessary to point out how ridiculous this “Loch Ness Monster sighting” is. But other than that…?

  15. Crewvy says:

    How can we be certain that this is not a picture of Bigfoot being transported across Loch Ness by Cthulhu ?

  16. wiseguy says:

    “lets give them something to talk about”and they did.

    It is a boat but not 100%.More like 95% and that 5% space is enough to attract attention seekers from all over the world looking to prove their worth.Nit picking wherever.

    Boats are popular all over again.Do you realize that this will increase the boat sales?No free advertising!

  17. jw says:

    Pink, I don’t know about the rest of you, but I come here to read about astronomy and other news, not political commentary.

    If you want to talk about irresponsible media, there isn’t a single network in the entire united states that isn’t and any suggestion that one is worse than the other is laughable. Besides that, The only constant is people’s political beliefs and their bias toward or against a network that they perceive is either on their side or against it.

    Please leave the political commentary and jabs at the other side out of what is supposed to be a science and astronomy site or risk turning off visitors such as myself. I don’t think it’s too much to ask personally.

  18. ILOVETHESTAR says:

    jw Says
    I agree with your statements!!!!!!
    Thank you for posting.

  19. vino says:

    This reminds me of the comic i read a few weeks ago

    http://www.phdcomics.com/comics/archive.php?comicid=1174

  20. Dominion says:

    I keep coming back to this picture. It looks so familiar. Is it Nessie? Is it a boat? Finally I realized what it is. This looks just like the Sea Monkeys I had when I was a kid. Wow! Who would have thought they could grow so big?

  21. Aqua says:

    Must be a slow news day?

  22. rlamont says:

    A quick search will show that the Guardian, The Telegraph, The Sun, ABC news, CNET (CBS), and a host of others have posted this story. I am very disappointed that the opportunity was taken to turn a good example of pseudoscience into a very juvenile political jab.

  23. Astrofiend says:

    Yeah – damn liberal media.

    jw Says:
    August 29th, 2009 at 12:47 am

    “If you want to talk about irresponsible media, there isn’t a single network in the entire united states that isn’t and any suggestion that one is worse than the other is laughable.”

    Pig’s arse. Of course no network is completely devoid of some sort of bias or irresponsible behaviour, but are you seriously suggesting that a network like FOX holds itself with the same integrity and to the same standards as a network like PBS? You wouldn’t be seeing this sort of tripe or anything like it on a show like ‘News Hour with Jim Lehrer’, that’s for damn sure.

    rlamont Says:
    August 29th, 2009 at 11:23 am

    “I am very disappointed that the opportunity was taken to turn a good example of pseudoscience into a very juvenile political jab.”

    Conservatives – so easily insulted. You’ll get over it one day. As far as I can tell, Nancy only had a go at FOX news’ tabloid journalism bent. You were the one making the connection to politics, which just goes to show what an obviously biased heap of rotting detritus FOX news and it’s associated shows (O’Reilly Factor, anyone?) actually are.

  24. William928 says:

    @Astrofiend: do hope you haven’t burned too many brain cells watching O’Reilly and that sort of dribble.( I ascertain from your posts that you’ve protected yourself) What’s laughable are those comparing FOX News to any legitimate network programming.

  25. Aqua says:

    Are you trying to tell me that this isn’t an image of Rush Limbaugh swimming in a sea of misinformation?

  26. Rolfruhig2 says:

    The reporter couldn’t stick to the subject. He had to drop a venemous commentary on Fox, creating a stupid distraction. Oh, these Lumpenleftists!

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