Just don't say "rods".
November 14, 2011 11:38 AM Subscribe
I have a backyard nocturnal UFC (Unidentified Flying Creature) What am I seeing?
posted by trinity8-director to Pets & Animals (20 answers total)
I've hesitated posting this question but WTH. I am curious. Please assume two things: 1) I'm a very good observer and B) I am not given to wild assumptions.
Born, raised, and lived most of my life in the Pacific Northwest in the less urban parts. I'm quite familiar with most of the flora and fauna of the region.
I live on a green belt that hosts the usual racoons, rabbits, owls, the occasional coyote, etc. I have a dual head halogen outdoor light for the deck.
Now, with the caveats out of the way, here are the salient bits and the question.
Last summer while waiting for the dog to do her night business, I was gazing up through the trees at the stars when something flew just a few feet overhead.
The flight was linear and level, no fluttering about. The creature had a fairly thin, tubular body. The wings did not flap as a bird would, nor was it on a descending glide path but it maintained its altitude.
There was no sound at all. If I hadn't been looking in the right place I would never have known it flew past. I have had birds fly over during the dog's night potty breaks; this was not a bird.
I estimate the length of the thing at ~9" and it moved pretty fast. A few seconds later a second one flew by, only this one was smaller, about 6" in length.
The closest thing I can compare it to, structurally, is a dragonfly but the flight characteristics were different and we don't have giant dragonflies here. Definitely not a bat (we have those as well).
Last night I saw the small one again, this time more at eye level. It confirmed to me again that it is not a bird or bat, the body looks insect like but it is much larger than the bugs we get around here and the flight was too direct and level for insects that I've observed before.
I'm willing to be wrong about what it is or is not so bring it on.