Man-made miracles, move over! These beautiful natural phenomena prove that Mother Nature is the ultimate creator:
The Fire Rainbow is the colloquial term for the atmospheric phenomenon known as circumhorizontal arc. This occurs when the sun is more than 58 degrees above the horizon, and the light emitted passes through cirrus clouds. Cirrus clouds, which are made up of hexagonal ice crystals, must be shaped like plates parallel to the ground for effect to occur.
When the sun's light enters the cloud vertically, the light leaves the ice crystal from the bottom, and the crystal bends the light to form the rainbow arc. The effect is similar to what you would witness when a light is filtered through a prism.
The Black Sun occurs in Denmark just before sunset in spring and autumn. The term refers to the instances when an enormous flock of European starlings (numbering in the hundreds of thousands), who gather from varying corners, creating an amazing pattern in the sky, almost entirely blocking the sun.
Catatumbo Lighting occurs on the mouth of the Catatumbo River at Lake Maracaibo, Venezuela. This atmospheric delight, which creates incessant, powerful flashes of lightning, occurs when a mass of storm clouds forms a voltage arc more than three miles high.
The incessant storm clouds are the result of strong winds blowing across the lake and the surrounding plains, colliding with the high mountain ridges of the surrounding Andes, Perija Mountains, and Meridas Cordillera.
The lightning is visible 140 to 160 nights a year, for ten hours per day, and up to 280 times every hour. This equates to over 1 million electrical discharges per year.
The fire whirl, fire devil, or fire tornado, is a rare natural phenomenon. It occurs when a fire, combined by certain air temperature and currents, forms a whirl that rises into the air like a tornado. They can be actual whirlwinds that disengage from the flames, or else can become a vortex of flame. The fire whirl usually occurs during bush fires.
The closest relative to a rainbow, the moonbow (or lunar rainbow) is a formation of water droplets, mist, and light. Unlike a rainbow, a moonbow is produced by light reflected from the moon, which mingles with the droplets of water and spraying mist, usually from a waterfall.
Because of the faint light emitted from the moon, moonbows are extremely elusive, and their colors hard to discern. However, there have been many sightings, particularly at Yosemite Falls in California, Cumberland Falls in Kentucky, Victoria Falls in Zambia/Zimbabwe, and Waimea in Hawaii.
Moonbows are also easily viewed when the moon is full, and can also be produced when the moon is low in the sky, and the rain is falling opposite.
Also known as the algal bloom, the Red Tide is the rapid accumulation of estuarine, marine, or freshwater algae in a water column, which tints the water red.
When the algae, or phytoplankton, accumulate in such a manner, they form dense clouds near the water’s surface. Since the phytoplankton is usually brown, red and green, the water, naturally, reflects this color on the surface.
The Naga fireballs are a natural, inexplicable phenomenon witnessed along the Mekong River, in Thailand and Laos. They refer to the glowing, reddish balls, which vary in size and rise from the water into the air, before disappearing.
The bizarre event takes place every October during the full moon. It is estimated that between tens and thousands of fireballs shoot from the river, some reaching a hundred meters in height.
Though many scientists have attempted to explain the phenomenon (commonly as a spontaneous ignition of gasses from the river), there is no substantial evidence to support their theories. Instead, the legend developed by locals – involving a river-haunting serpent, Naga, who shoots fireballs to celebrate the end of Buddhist lent – has taken hold.
An annual festival is held to celebrate the Naga fireballs, one of the most beautiful natural phenomena on the planet.