Metal Balls Fell From Space in India, What Are They?
It’s raining cats and dogs! Literally! Things falling down from the sky can be pretty unexpected, so here are some examples.
Residents of Texarkana, Texas, once had light rain and fish shower. No need to go fishing out in the sea — the fish literally falls down on your head! In fact, animal rains are not uncommon: waterspouts or updrafts occurring in different corners of the Earth sometimes carry small creatures up with them. Those could be crabs, frogs, or indeed fish.
A waterspout is generally a whirlwind that picks up water and grows in size until it connects the surface of the water and the clouds. Lightweight critters living close to the water surface often get caught in the vortex and carried up and away. Thunderstorm clouds are constant companions of waterspouts, too.
When the storm reaches a landmass, it starts slowing down, having nowhere to take new energy from. It slowly subsides, the atmospheric pressure drops, and the thunderclouds release the water in them — along with the unfortunate small animals and fish. Sometimes, it’s just a few frogs, frozen from the cold up above, but at other times it could be hundreds or thousands of creatures raining down upon the land.
A much more unusual rain once happened in Oakville, Washington, and it’s still waiting for someone to explain it. The rain clouds looked perfectly normal, but the rain they released was anything but. Translucent jelly-like blobs fell on the town, covering a total area of about 20 square miles. Each of them wasn’t larger than a grain of rice.
Researchers who studied those raindrops claimed that the gooey blobs contained human white blood cells. Some believe they might have been evaporated jellyfish resulting in rain, or waste from a commercial airplane.
Now, this kind of rain is what I’d like to see someday: a money shower! One such event occurred in a small town in Germany. A woman was driving, when she suddenly saw banknotes swirling down from the sky, so she hit the brakes. She went out of the car and later said she’d managed to collect quite a large amount of money, after which, as any responsible citizen should, she turned it over to the police.
Strangely, when the officers came back to the scene with the woman, they couldn’t find any more cash, although she claimed she hadn’t been able to collect everything. There’s still no explanation for the event, but certainly, no waterspout could’ve caused that.
A pretty unpleasant kind of rain happened back in 1876 in Olympia Springs, Kentucky. It was a very local kind, too: Mrs. Crouch said that she had been making soap outside her home when pieces of raw meat suddenly started falling down from the sky around her. Some of those chunks were pretty massive, reaching over 3 inches in diameter.
Local newspapers reported that two people who decided to remain unknown tasted the meat and concluded it was mutton or venison. Months later, scientists decided to find out the truth behind the strange event. It became a matter of heated debate until one of the researchers came up with the most reasonable conclusion.
The meat rain must have been caused by vultures flying over the town at the time. These birds sometimes regurgitate food right in the middle of their flight as a defense mechanism or to make their bodies lighter to fly faster. And that must’ve been what happened right over Mrs. Crouch’s house, unfortunately.
Something totally inedible but no less sinister rained down on several villages in India in the middle of May 2022. Huge black and silver metal balls started dropping from the sky, the first one weighing over 15 pounds. Astounded residents watched in shock as it hammered the ground, scattering pieces of itself across the nearby fields.
Similar balls later fell in the other two neighboring villages. Luckily, no one was harmed during this strange metal rain, but the issue remained: we’re on Earth, and it usually rains water here. The local authorities weren’t sure what it was about, but astronomers soon voiced a theory that it could be debris from a space rocket.
One that fits the description had launched in September 2021, aiming to put a communications satellite into orbit. Upon its reentry into the atmosphere, it might have been damaged, causing several chunks of it to detach and fall down on the ground in India.
Sometimes, it rains birds too. One such event occurred in Arkansas in 2010. Weather conditions might cause things like that to happen, but there are simpler reasons too: loud noise and confusion, or even collisions with aircraft. In the case of Arkansas, it was the noise and flashing lights from the New Year’s Eve fireworks.
The show startled thousands of birds and made them start into the air. They were panicking and disoriented, so they collided with buildings, cars, and trees. Many of them eventually fell to the ground, making lots of people believe it was actually raining birds.
Now, if anything could startle me out, in the sky, it’s a rain of spiders. And if you wonder whether it’s a real thing, well, yes, it is. In Australia, spider rains actually happen quite often. They even got a name for this: ballooning.
It goes like this: spiders that can balloon climb up trees and tall bushes, trying to reach the highest point available in the area. When they’ve climbed up to the very top, they spin their web in such a way that it allows them to be carried by the wind. And there it goes — clutching the strands of the web with its tiny little feet, the brave spider lifts off into the air and flies to whatever awaits it out there.
Normally, ballooning goes unnoticed by us humans because spiders don’t travel in large groups. You might have a shocking experience when a spider suddenly lands on your face out of nowhere, but otherwise, it’s a rare occasion to meet more than two ballooners at once.
Still, when the weather gets particularly bad, with lots of rain or wind, thousands or even millions of spiders might decide it’s time to move to somewhere friendlier and take to the sky all at once. That’s when spider rains occur. Those who witnessed the most recent ones back in 2012 and 2015 say it looks like a snowfall: spiders slowly drifting down on their web parachutes that settle on the ground and turn it white.
Remember waterspouts? Well, those things can lift not only fish and frogs into the sky and make a spectacular show of them falling back on the ground. Golf balls sometimes become their cargo too! And I’m not speaking of golf-ball sized hail, but actual balls.
The town of Punta Gorda in Florida witnessed a rain of golf balls in 1969. Newspapers reported dozens upon dozens of those things pummeling the ground and buildings for a short while. Since it’s a coastal town with lots of golf courses, it wasn’t hard to explain the event: a waterspout must have formed near the shore, traveled to some course, grabbed a few dozen golf balls, and then released them over the town.
Rain can be pretty refreshing, as long as it’s not mud rain. On April 12, 1902, the town of Easton, Philadelphia, experienced an unusual shower. It made all those unfortunate enough to go outside, take an actual shower, and wash their clothes to boot.
The raindrops looked dirty to the eye, and they were: people, buildings, and streets looked really wanting to take a good bath after it stopped pouring. The witnesses reported a considerable amount of dust in the air before the rain started, which probably explains the event.
In 2011, a town in Scotland saw another weird rain variety: it was showered with worms. The rain didn’t cover a large area — it seems only some local academy students were unlucky enough to get invertebrates falling on their heads while playing soccer.
There was a significant change in the weather at the time, so scientists believe it might’ve resulted from some meteorological anomaly.