The amazing «devil’s corkscrews» in Nebraska

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Sometimes even the most strange and seemingly inexplicable things can have the simplest rational explanation. This does not mean that there is no mystery and nothing supernatural in the world, but some «incomprehensible» phenomena remain only as long as someone doesn’t reveal their secret. That’s what happened with mysterious spirals found in the late nineteenth century in Nebraska USA and called «devil’s corkscrews».

Удивительные «штопоры дьявола» в Небраске

The discovery of the mysterious «devil’s corkscrews»

In 1891, a paleontologist Erwin Barbour of the visited ne and discovered upstate striking spiral of education in the thickness of the crumbled rocks. You might think that a fabulous giant fun here, will drive into the ground a huge corkscrew and pulling it back, causing the soil still these spiral tracks with a length of several meters. However, despite the fact that the scientist himself named his discovery the «devil’s corkscrews» or what the hell he never believed. Which is why Barbour has set a goal to explain this phenomenon scientifically.

Удивительные «штопоры дьявола» в Небраске

Americans have suggested that the helical formations are fossilized remains of a giant ancient algae or sponges. No wonder it is considered that many millions of years ago this place was a large freshwater lake. Another paleontologist, Theodore Fuchs, said his colleague, saying that, most likely, the «devil’s corkscrews» are of terrestrial origin and are the burrows of extinct animals. According to Fuchs, these spirals had been dug by the ancestors of modern rodents. Of Barbour, however, refused to recognize this theory and made in 1896 at a meeting of the American geological society. There he shocked the audience by presenting them perfectly symmetrical screws, which, they say, could not be created any animals.

Ancestors of beavers

However, after 8 years of the global scientific community had learned that for his demonstrations enterprising Erwin has selected the most correct fossilized spiral, putting aside the unsightly specimens do not fit into his theory. Nevertheless, all these years, the hypothesis Barbora was dominant, and the scientist has received considerable recognition for his discovery. But then the truth accidentally revealed itself, and Barbour immediately lost its reputation.

In 1904, the staff of the Museum of natural history, Pittsburgh suddenly found in one of the «devil’s corkscrews» remains poorly known animal from the order of rodents. Then the specialists, and it became clear who dug these tunnels under the ground. The finding also explained the origin of the odd scratches in some «devil’s corkscrews». This, as it turned out, there were traces of incisors ancient animal. Found the creature was Paleokastro – the ancestor of modern beavers. The remains of these animals were previously found in North America, but no one knew that paleohistory dug yourself a spiral hole.

Удивительные «штопоры дьявола» в Небраске

Paleohistory existed on the Earth at the end of the Oligocene epoch, which ended 23 million years ago. On their descendants of the American fossil beavers were like little. Paleohistory had a much smaller, lived on land and were deprived of their powerful tails. But their jaws and front legs were much stronger than those known to us beavers. Perhaps the modern and ancient beavers is that brings together an unprecedented dedication and creative approach to her.

The natives revered Paleokastro

It is interesting that in the traditions of the Lakota Indians, still living here, there is a story about the «grandparents-beavers» who saved the world from the terrible monsters that lived under the ground. This area was worn among the natives the name of a Bad Ground. The natives from time to time came across the skeletons of dinosaurs and other ancient animals. They are very afraid of these remains, considering that the bone may, under certain conditions, to be alive again.

Удивительные «штопоры дьявола» в Небраске

Most Indians were afraid Unsteadily – a giant water serpent. According to the legend, a local warrior, Wakinyan could not defeat the monster, and then he had to throw a call. Wakinyan called for any brave souls to sacrifice himself for the salvation of all living things. The call eagerly responded «grandpa beaver». She went to the ground, and there turned to stone, together with its numerous intricate burrows, not to let Unstabile continue to escape to the surface.

Since then, the Indians honored Paleokastro and believed them to be petrified spiral burrows shrines. Thus, while scientists more than a decade struggled with the mystery of the origin of «devil’s corkscrews», natives for many centuries were well aware of the fact that it is fossilized burrows of ancient beavers. Unfortunately, no one asked. See men of science about the legend, and the origins emerge from the crumbling slopes, bizarre spirals would not be a mystery to them from the beginning. Here’s how it happens in life…

Удивительные «штопоры дьявола» в Небраске

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