Researchers challenge the mystery Namib desert in the natural world "fairy circle"

ByPius Mahimbi

It spreads to about 50,000 square kilometers on the Pacific side of the Republic of Namibia located in southwest AfricaNamib DesertThere are reports in the world around the world centered on the UK "Mystery CircleDog "Fairy Circle(Circle of fairies) "phenomenon exists. Although the view that mystery circle is artificially created is strong, Fairy Circle is the very existence of "mystery" that the phenomenon can not be elucidated even when numerous researchers conduct investigation.

BBC - Earth - Mystery fairy circles defy explanation

In the Namibia desert, the Queceb River flows to the central part, and furthermore the sea mist generated in the Atlantic Ocean flows into the inland part by the wind and plants are growing naturally. The phenomenon seen in the area where the plants are growing up is the Fairy Circle, and the place where the grass does not grow at all somehow spreads in a circular shape in the place where the grass of the height of about the knee is growing, so it is given a name It was done.

ByVernon Swanepoel

There are countless Fairy Circles, and it is believed that the local people "God's footprints" and "Dragons live in the ground". Many researchers are investigating repeatedly to elucidate the mystery of Fairy Circle, and there are several theories.

◆ Termite theory
The most influential among many theories is the termite theory that Dr. Norbert Jürgens, an ecologist at the University of Hamburg, advocates. Dr. Jürgens visited the Namib Desert 40 times by 2013 and surveyed more than 1,200 Fairy Circles.

ByMalcolm Tattersall

The existence of Psammotermes allocerus which is common to all Fairy Circle which Dr. Jurgens investigated is one termite. Termites have a habit of eating the root of plants and they eat all the roots of plants in the range of action. As root can be eaten, rainwater gathers in the basement because there are no plants to suck up the water. Dr. Jürgens is the theory that Fairy Circle will occur as plants that could not eat the rainwater suck up and grow.

Dr. Jürgens published a paper that summarized his own investigation in 2013 and reported that a large number of media that received the announcement "The mystery of Fairy Circle was solved."
"Fairy circle", in fact the termite caused 1 photograph International news: AFPBB News

However, Dr. Walter Tschinkel, a biologist at Florida State University, denies the termite theory straight from it. Actually, Dr. Tschinkel who thought that "the cause of the Fairy Circle must be termites" at the beginning of the survey is currently Dr. Tschinkel, but now, "There is a high correlation between Fairy Circle and termite, but it is said that the cause is termites There is no evidence. "

Furthermore, there is a view that the report of Fairy Circle that the existence of termites was not confirmed is successive from other scholars, and there is no causal relation between Fairy Circle and termites.

Climate theory
The annual rainfall of the Namib Desert is 20 - 50 mm and it is a dry area that is superb. Dr. Michael Cramer, a plant physiologist at the University of Cape Town, argues, "Fairy circles are generated due to plants competing for water resources due to desert-specific dry climate." Dr. Cramer investigated precipitation and temperature in the Namib Desert and found that the area where Fairy Circle is occurring is a particularly dry area in the Namib Desert.


Durable plants suck up moisture in the ground, poor plants will wither. More plenty of water will accumulate in the ground in places where plants that have withered grew, and only the strong plants will grow in the surroundings, which means that Fairy Circles will occur. To prevent strong plants from interfering with each other, Fairy Circles do not overlap and are likely to occur at regular intervals.

Dr. Stephan Getzin, an ecologist at the Helmholtz Institute for Environmental Studies who discovered that there was regularity in the location of the occurrence of Fairy Circle from the sky, came to the same conclusion as Dr. Cramer.

Gas theory
The chemist group at Pretoria University insists that the Fairy Circle is made by the gas generated from the ground. The chemist group conducted an experiment that collects the soil of the part of the Fairy Circle where plants are not growing and plant the seeds of the plant. In the experiment it turned out that the plant species did not grow up in the soil sampled. According to the analysis result of the soil, it is pointed out that the gas may be leaking from the ground, and the chemist group concludes that "gas generated from the ground is preventing plant growth".

ByElias Schewel

◆ Ostrich Sitting Theory
One researcher claimed that the ostrich would sit on the plant for a certain period of time in order to take a rest, so that only that part of the plant would grow and the Fairy Circle would occur. Although many ostriches live in the Namib desert, many ostriches sitting theories are denied by many researchers.

ByJosh * m

While many researchers have carried out surveys and advocate unique theories and theories, none of them have elucidated the cause of Fairy Circle. However, as the survey can be continued in the future, it is expected that it will be clarified in the future not far, but as a body only to see that the mystery calls a mystery without being elucidated.

in Science, Posted by darkhorse_log