A fascinating new viral video has left social media baffled as it appears to show the surface of the Earth moving up and down as if it’s breathing.
Brian Nuttall was out walking on a windy autumn day at Apple River in Nova Scotia, Canada on October 31, when he noticed the unusual phenomenon and pulled out his phone to capture the mesmerising scene on film. And considering this happened on Halloween, we’re surprised he wasn’t more spooked out by the whole thing!
The video of the mossy forest floor rising and falling has led to a lot of speculation online as to what is causing the incredible natural phenomenon. Forests are often called the lungs of the Earth, after all, so does this video literally show the breath of Gaia?
Well, in short, no. While some speculated the scene could be caused by a sinkhole or a stream under the ground, the explanation is actually a lot more simple.
As explained by Brian on social media, the phenomenon is due to the tree roots spread out wide underneath the forest floor having become detached. During high winds, the root systems heave under the ground, making them appear to “breathe”.
As reported by CBC News, in a Facebook post, Mr Nuttall wrote:
As I entered a patch of trees spared from clear cutting, I noticed the ground moving. I believe the larger trees are doomed to blow down but are currently spared, the smaller trees around them help hold each other up, as the wind pushes the trees into one another.
The punishing prevailing winds have taken their toll on the side hill, the roots have loosened and the mossy ground from the once shaded forest floor are giving way, soon to be toppled over.