Skip to main content

Strange Things Appeared In the Florida Skies After Hurricane Ian

What is that?

TKHurricane Ian was a massive, deadly, and highly damaging storm that wreaked havoc across the Caribbean as well as Florida. As residents dealt with the enormous aftermath, several noticed strange lights leaping around in the sky. Were they UFOs? Guardian angels looking down from above? Some kind of supernatural occurrence?

In this video, a man films the lights he’s seeing, which mysteriously vanish behind sunglasses.

WATCH VIDEO HERE

The truth is not so supernatural, although it is still spectacular. What this man witnessed is commonly called a “sun dog”, though other terms range from the scientific (“paraihelia”) to the descriptive (a “mock sun” or “false sun.” Basically it’s an atmospheric optical illusion caused by ice crystals high up in the atmosphere, where the air is very cold, which act like a prism and refract the sun’s light, making luminous shapes in the sky.

Sun dogs are most often seen on shorelines when the sun is close to the horizon, and tend to appear at a point in the sky twenty-two degrees away from the sun. The reason that the effect disappears when he holds up the polarized sunglasses is because that is the whole purpose of sunglasses, to block refracted sun rays.

And as for the strange movement? That is what is known as a “jumping sun dog” which are also called “crown flashes”. (The names for atmospheric phenomena are so neat.) These occur above storm clouds, like the kind that pile up around hurricanes, and occur when long ice crystals above the clouds align with the clouds electrical field, then quickly shift and “jump” every time lightning erupts and causes a change in that alignment.

So for now, just take it as a sign to stay inside.