UFO hunters are certain they have found an alien squirrel on Mars, touting official NASA photos as evidence to back their claims.
The supposed alien squirrel was spotted in a NASA photo snapped by the Mars Curiosity rover on the 52nd day of its mission. The image features a boulder-strewn field where the rover collected rock samples for analysis. UFO hunter and conspiracy theorist Scott C Waring is, however, convinced the photo hides a treasure trove of alien secrets.
According to Mr Waring’s bizarre claims, an “amazing and strange” being sits on the left side of the image – a squirrel.
Mr Waring said: “I guess that’s why I love this one so much. It’s a cute rodent on Mars.
“Note the lighter colour, upper and lower eyelids, it’s nose and cheek areas, its ear, its front and stomach.
“Looks similar to a squirrel camouflaged in the stones and sand by its colours.”
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In his opinion, the image is clear-cut evidence of life on Mars, that has been swept under the rug by NASA.
However, this is not the first time Mr Waring has made outrageous claims about NASA and aliens in our solar system.
He has previously shared photographs of what he claimed was a humanoid alien on Mars.
And then, just days later, the UFO hunter published even more NASA photos of what he claimed were “alien figures”.
Mr Waring said: “This might have been the big historical announcement that NASA was supposed to make, however, they decided life on Mars was a secret worth keeping since they don’t want China or Russia to beat America to Mars.
“So they shut up about it and can take their time to Mars this way.”
UFO sceptics, however, will dismiss the photos and instead consider them evidence of pareidolia.
Pareidolia is a well-known effect that tricks the mind into seeing recognisable shapes and patterns where they do not exist.
Pareidolia can cause a person to see animal-shaped clouds in the sky or squirrel-shaped rocks on Mars.
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Astronomer Larry sessions said: “It’s a form of apophenia, which is a more general term for the human tendency to seek patterns in random information.
“Everyone experiences it from time to time. Seeing the famous man in the moon is a classic example from astronomy.
“The ability to experience pareidolia is more developed in some people and less in others.”
There is also no evidence life exists anywhere beyond our planet or the solar system.
Some scientists speculate very simple, microbial life may have developed on Mars billions of years ago.
NASA said: “On Earth, all forms of life need water to survive.
“It is likely, though not certain, that if life ever evolved on Mars, it did so in the presence of a long-standing supply of water.
“On Mars, we will, therefore, search for evidence of life in areas where liquid water was once stable, and below the surface where it still might exist today.”