The sudden appearance of orange goo at an Inuit village in northwest Alaska has left experts baffled.
The substance first washed up on the shores of Kivalina, about 625 miles northwest of Anchorage, on Wednesday. It covered most of the harbour, attracting crowds of bemused residents.
On Thursday residents found the orange matter floating on top of the rain buckets they use to collect drinking water.
By Friday, the orange substance in the harbour had dissipated or washed out to sea, and what was left on ground had dried to a powdery substance.
Samples of the orange matter were collected in canning jars and sent to a lab in Anchorage for analysis. Until results are known, Kivalina’s 374 residents will likely continue to wonder just what exactly happened in their village…
Villagers have never seen anything like this before, and elders have never heard any stories passed down from earlier generations about an orange-coloured substance coming into town…
The Coast Guard already has ruled out that the orange material, which some people described as having a semi-solid feel to it, was man-made or a petroleum product.
That leaves algae as the best guess, said village administrator Janet Mitchell.
The concern is if it’s somehow harmful. What will it do to fish, which villagers will soon start catching to stock up for winter, or the caribou currently being hunted, or the berries..?
The village is also about 40 miles from the Red Dog zinc mine, but officials there assured the village the substance didn’t come from them.
Anyone looking for a reincarnation of Rod Serling?
UPDATE: Turns out to be a fungus among us. Perfectly natural.