Recently, the mysterious barren patches known as fairy circles were discovered in Australia and it could lead researchers to determine to actual causes for them to appear on Australian land. On Monday, a study was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences correlating the sprout of fairy circles with current droughts and insufficient water.
The circular barren patches were thought to exist only in the Namibian desert in southern Africa. Although this weird phenomenon has baffled scientists for decades, the apparition of fairy circles in Australia wasn’t found until two years ago, because they weren’t there before.
The barren patches form interesting patterns, which intrigued the viewers as they show a certain order and can be a pleasant sight if looked from above. One of the researchers involved in the study Stephan Getzin had the opportunity to gaze at the fairy circles from above.
“This is a missing link in the debate about the origin of Namibian fairy circles,” said Stephan Getzin from the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research. “Because in Australia we find an identical fairy circle pattern, but without any explanatory correlation to termite or ant activity”
A new theory proposed by researchers after studying the area, is that grasses are able to self-organize themselves in patterns in order to seize stream resources better, given the scarce water in the region.
This last theory appears to be the more suitable for the current situation, and it would fit with the ‘recent’ fairy circles reported in the remote Pilbara area of Western Australia.
Separating myths from facts
As well as with crop circles, this phenomenon occurring in Namibia, and now Australia, have also been credited to beings from outer space. However, there are more plausible theories proposed by researchers after examining the fairy circles from both locations.
The first theory claims the fairy circles are due to toxic carbon monoxide gas that rises up from the Earth’s core, resulting in the lack of vegetation on a determined area. Yet researchers haven’t been able to prove whether this theory is sustainable or not, as it will also had to respond why it doesn’t happen all over the world but just in two places, so far.
There’s also a theory that suggests insects, including ants and termites, nibble away at the root of the grasses. However possible can be for insects to eat their way into the bushes, it doesn’t explain why the fairy circles form in pattern across vast regions of land, instead of focusing in one place.
There are several theories on the origin for this fairy circles dating back as far as 1970, yet the most popular ones can be the most mystical. Locals claim this phenomenon happens when fairies dance in a circle through the night, while others say a dragon is responsible for burning holes into the land creates them.