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Optical Illusion Makes It Look Like Ship Is Floating Over The Sea

Optical Illusion Makes It Look Like Ship Is Floating Over The Sea

The strange sight was spotted off the coast of New Zealand

Dominic Smithers

Dominic Smithers

A beachgoer has spotted a ship appearing to float above the sea.

Monika Shaffner was strolling along the sands at Mount Maunganui in New Zealand and was looking out onto the surf when she saw the boat in the distance.

But unlike most vessels, which float on the water, this one seemed to be hovering in the air.

Posting the video on social media, Monika said: "I filmed this optical phenomenon that made a ship look like it was floating in the air."

Now, as we know, ships can't fly. So, what's behind this bizarre optical illusion?

It's something called a Fata Morgana (Mirage) which, in calmer weather, causes a layer of warmer air to sit over colder dense air, creating the image to be distorted.

And this isn't the first time in the past few weeks when people have been bamboozled by a trick of the light.

The boat was spotted off the coast of New Zealand.

Earlier this month, a photograph was posted on Reddit that appeared to show a grey waste bin hovering over a pavement.

Again, while we all know bins don't actually have the ability to fly - they don't - the confusing snap left many people scratching their heads.

Sharing the pic on Twitter, one person asked: "Do you also see this bin floating? Lol."

A second befuddled user said: "Yep. I saw a floating bin. Stay safe everyone."

"Floating bins being issued by Oldham Council," put a third.

While another added: "My wheels bin is floating."

Fortunately, there were plenty of others out there who were willing to put people's minds at ease and explained that bins are not sentient beings from another universe.

Haters will say it's just a wet patch.

It was in fact just an optical illusion caused by the position of the bin to a wet patch of concrete, which made it seem as though it was flying.

Describing the theory, one user said: "A nice example of how we infer object position from what we presume to be a cast shadow."

And there were plenty of others who jumped in and poured further cold water on bizarre conspiracy theories.

"It looks like a floating garbage bin. But it actually was just a wet spot on the pavement," said one.

Another later put: "Things are not always as they seem! FYI the bin is not floating, but it is the first thing our brain makes us think!

"I love a good optical illusion. It demonstrates just how much our brain can mislead us to what is really going on! (photo from reddit). PS its a wet patch."

Featured Image Credit: ViralHog

Topics: World News, Weird