Since the first supposed sighting in 1933, someone reports seeing the Loch Ness Monster in Scotland, and this time a tour boat owner says he has a sonar photo to prove it. The legendary monster is one of the most famous sightings of all time, but the photos have either been faked or too blurry to tell if it’s really the Loch Ness itself.
Marcus Atkinson, who snapped a shot of the image from his on board fish and depth finder on his camera phone, says the depth finder picked up a 5 foot wide object at a depth of 75 feet. Atkinson who has worked on the lake for several years says that there is nothing that big in the water and the wavy green line on his depth finder is proof Nessie exists.
Atkinson says, “I was dropping customers at Urquhart Castle and then got my boat out of the way of the other tour companies. I moved out into the water and looked at the sonar and saw this image had appeared. The device takes a reading of the depth and what is below the boat every quarter of a second and gradually builds up a picture, so it covered a time of about five minutes.”
He continued, “The object got bigger and bigger and I thought ‘bloody hell’ and took a picture with my mobile phone. There is nothing that big in the Loch. I was in shock as it looked like a big serpent, it’s amazing. You can’t fake a sonar image. I have never seen anything returned like this on the fish finder. It is a bizarre shape to me. I have shown it to other experienced skippers and none of us know what it was. I have seen a lot of pictures in 21 years of being here but this is the most clearest image yet. Undoubtedly, there is something in the loch.”
As convinced as Atkinson maybe, Dr Simon Boxall of the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton, says “The picture is built up slowly as the boat moves. So it’s not a snap shot and thus the image is not an image of a single object unless it is very still. The image shows a bloom of algae and zooplankton that would exist on what would be a thermocline. Zooplankton live off this algae and reflect sound signals from echo sounders and fish finders very well. They will appear as a linear “blob” on the screen, just like this. This is a monster made of millions of tiny animals and plants and represents the bulk of life in the Loch.”
Regardless all is not lost, Atkinson’s sonar photo has won him first prize in the Best Nessie Sighting of The Year Award.