‘UFO’ was explainable, NRC physicist says

Fast-moving clouds

Scientist throws water on skywatcher’s claim of unidentified object over Oak Bay

On a night when most people were indoors, Eric Chisholm had his camera set up on Bear Mountain golf course.

An engineering physicist with the National Research Council’s Herzberg Institute of Astrophysics in Saanich, Chisholm was taking pictures of the night sky at about 9 p.m. on Jan. 22.

At the same time Victoria resident Fritz Stammberger was videotaping the night sky from a spot in Fernwood. Both men documented a large, glowing light on the western horizon. As well, Stammberger – who declined an interview but offered some details in an e-mail – recorded a second moving light over Oak Bay.

Unlike Stammberger, who posted his video to YouTube claiming the first flickering light was a UFO, Chisholm had a different take on what he was seeing.

“I’m ninety-nine point nine, nine, nine, nine, nine per cent sure it was Jupiter,” he said.

“At the time he (Stammberger) was looking you had an object that would have been brighter than anything else out there except the moon, and I know it was Jupiter because I was trying to take pictures of it.”

Clouds moving quickly across the horizon also contributed to the illusion of Jupiter blinking or flickering, Chisholm said.

Stammberger, who runs an online alternative news website, also recorded a bright object that appeared to be following the shoreline around Oak Bay.

Chisholm says that was likely flares from a Canadian Forces search and rescue aircraft.

A spokesperson for the Department of National Defence confirmed that a 442 Squadron Buffalo dispatched from CFB Comox was dropping flares between 6:45 and 10:30 p.m. in the Mt. Prevost area near Duncan that night.

They were aiding an RCMP search and rescue team looking for a hang glider who had crashed.

The flares could be seen from as far away as Gabriola Island off Nanaimo.

Stammberger’s video can be seen at www.ufodigest.com/video/massive-ufo-over-british-columbia-canada.

vmoreau@oakbaynews.com

Just Posted

Ocean swim challenge shines spotlight on Crystal Pool plight

Ultra-marathon swimmer sends tongue-in-cheek invite to Victoria council

Sidney crash involving seniors underscores pedestrian safety issues

Sunday’s collision includes many of the main factors in crashes involving pedestrians

Morning crashes still causing delays for commuters

Three-vehicle crash on Highway 1 still causing congestion

Beat the rush: Give the gift of time to the community this holiday season

Volunteer Victoria offers tips for meaningful experiences

Sunny skies ahead for Wednesday

Plus a look ahead at your weekend

VIDEO: Ron MacLean says he doesn’t believe former co-host Don Cherry is racist

Sportsnet fired Cherry on Nov. 11, two days after controversial on-air comments during ‘Coach’s Corner’

POLL: Do you plan on making any purchases on Black Friday?

We’ve all seen the images. Shoppers rioting outside of a store in… Continue reading

B.C. woman puts call out for 10,000 personal, heartfelt Christmas cards for the homeless

Christmas Card Collective enters into third year of making spirits bright

No turn signals, double-parking among top concerns for B.C. drivers: poll

Two-thirds of B.C. drivers said that not using turn signals was their biggest pet peeve

1 dead, 2 seriously injured in crash with elk on Hwy. 18 in Cowichan

North Cowichan/Duncan RCMP were called to the scene at about 8 p.m. Tuesday night

Man accused in fatal Shuswap church shooting also charged with arson

Parmenter family home badly damaged by fire a month before killing

PHOTOS: Patients pelt doctors with snowballs, all for BC Children’s Hospital

The snowball fight was to raise funds for the annual Snowball Fight for Kids Campaign

‘Our culture is not a religion,’ Indigenous educator tells B.C. Supreme Court in case of smudging at school

Mother also gave evidence Tuesday in Nanaimo courtroom, case continues Wednesday

B.C. man who killed Belgian tourist near Boston Bar gets life in prison, no parole until 2042

Sean McKenzie pleaded guilty to second-degree murder of 28-year-old Amelie Christelle Sakkalis

Most Read