No One Knows Where This Water Goes

By Anupum Pant


In the Judge Magney State Park, Minnesota, as the Brule river makes it way towards Lake Superior, something very unusual happens at the Devil’s Kettle Falls – The river splits into two streams, one of which moves away like a normal stream and joins the Lake Superior. But the other stream falls down several meters into a big dark hole. No one till date, has been able to find where the water falling into this hole ends up.

Although no one has been able to prove it, the current theory which holds to some extent, says that the water flows through underground passageways and makes its way to the Lake Superior.

What all has been tried?

  • Several gallons of dye to track the water stream has been poured into the hole. The dye once poured in has been never seen again.  Besides that, so many kinds of objects have been thrown in there. Nothing ever comes out. Moreover, with every tourist, geologist or scientist throwing something in there, it has still not got clogged yet. So, it is the best place to get free ping-pong balls and other objects.
  • Some say that a car fell into the hole once and was never seen again. But those are probably just stories because the place isn’t big enough to accommodate a car.
  • Throwing in GPS tracking devices also don’t work because the stream takes them underground where they can’t be tracked by the satellites.
  • People can’t be dropped in because it is 240 meters deep and no one knows how far it keeps going. There is a lot of uncertainty to risk a human life.
  • Water-proof cameras can’t be tied to ropes and sent down because the impacts break them. Moreover, the video stream would be impossible to receive if it goes too far and several rock layers come in between.

More Mystery

But there is more. Unlike other parts of the world, where underground rivers are formed cutting through soft-rock deposits (e.g: limestone) underground, this part of Minnesota has no soft-rocks underground. So, even large underground caves can’t be used to explain the Devil’s Kettle.

Scientists have even dismissed a theory that says probably lava tubes have been formed inside. Geologists say that the kind of rock that is there inside, can’t form lava tubes.

What do you think is down there? Do you have any ideas to help figure it out?


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Tiger Fish Jumps Out of Water and Catches Flying Birds

By Anupum Pant

It is normal for birds to swoop down and catch fish from water. But, since 1940s, stories about a meter-long-demonic-African-fish leaping out of water to catch birds in mid-air have been told. They were only stories; no one had seen the actual occurrence…Until now.

Recently, a video of it happening was captured by a team of researchers from North-West University in Potchefstroom, South Africa, and was posted on YouTube. As expected, the video went viral. Who wouldn’t love watching a fish-eating a bird! I put it on repeat and must have watched it 10 times already.

In the video you see a Tiger fish (Hydrocynus vittatus – literally means a ‘spotted water dog’) that lives in African fresh waters. It is one of the largest predators there and lives with a larger cousin, the Giant Tiger fish (Hydrocynus goliath). The Tiger fish can measure as much as 1 meter in length. On the other hand, giant tiger fish (not seen here) can reach up to 1.5 meters in length.

Taking shots around the South African lake in the Mapungubwe National Park, they were not really expecting to record a video in which a fish would fly out of the water and catch a swallow. Rather they were there to study migration and habitat at the lake. The team was surprised to see this. The director said:

“The whole action of jumping and catching the swallow in flight happens so incredibly quickly that after we first saw it, it took all of us a while to really fully comprehend what we had just seen.”

Given that a fish in water, or even human beings for that matter, cannot see beyond a specific window (The Underwater Optical Man-hole), this fish does an amazing job of tracking and striking a bird in mid-flight with so much precision. Cheers for that Mr. Tiger Fish.

Agreed the video isn’t clear, but it the first of its kind. Soon, I hope, we’ll see HD, NatGeo quality videos. Watch it on video here: [Video]