According to every single news outlet, and now this one (yay), the good folks at NASA have spotted a mystery ‘thing’ on Mars that seems to resemble a crab.
Of course, the image quickly went viral on social media with plenty of people quick to claim that it’s in fact a weirdly shaped rock and not a flesh-eating Martian space crab.
Even more entertaining is the fact that the photo popped up in the Facebook group, Journey to the Surface of the Moon, whose slogan is ‘They will not tell the truth about MARS’. Brilliant.
Seth Shostak put the appearance of the ‘space crab’ down to a a phenomenon called pareidolia – which is basically the brain’s ability to see shapes in random objects. Like when we see animals in clouds.
Seth, a senior astronomer at the Center for SETI Research, said: “Those that send them to me are generally quite excited, as they claim that these frequently resemble something you wouldn’t expect to find on the rusty, dusty surface of the Red Planet.”
He continued: “It’s usually some sort of animal, but occasionally even weirder objects such as automobile parts. Maybe they think there are cars on Mars.”
Well, that’s that then. Maybe we can ask the Mars One astronauts to Snapchat us when they finally land on the Red Planet.