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Fallstreak Holes

11 May 2015, 07:01 UTC
Fallstreak Holes
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

Every year the Desert Foothills Land Trust in Arizona runs a photo competition open to both professionals and amateurs. The goal is to promote preservation of the native desert beauty, flora, fauna, and landscape. The 2014 winner in the amateur category, receiving the People’s Choice Award, was Tammy Manganelli from New River. Her award winning photo is reproduced above with her gracious permission. You can click on it to see a larger version.
Here’s the EXIF data: Nikon D610 + 70-300mm lens, ¼s, f3.5, ISO 100.
When I first saw that striking image, my initial impression was that it showed a relatively rare meteorological phenomenon known as a fallstreak hole. There’s many examples you can see online. Check out the results of this Google Image search. You can see why they’re called fallstreak holes — they appear as a nearly circular “hole” in a cloud, and in many cases you see streaks falling from the hole. Those streaks consist of either ice crystals or rain. Manganelli’s photo shows what appears to be mostly rain, but there’s probably some ice crystals too.

The strange appearance of fallstreak holes often leads to claims of UFOs and secret government tests being the ...

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