Can Animals Predict Disaster?

Can Animals Predict Disaster?
by Mnemo

It has been said that animals may have a sixth sense; predicting natural disasters (hurricanes, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, etc.) or events. Some scientists believe that this may be true. It has been found that animals can pick up infrasound signals from upcoming catastrophes.

Infrasound waves are low-frequency rumbles from natural disasters that are at such a low pitch that they are inaudible to the human ear. Infrasound can travel through the air, ground, and water. The lowest limit of human hearing ability is 20 hertz; infrasound is any frequency lower than 20 hertz. However, animals are able to detect these extremely bass reverberations. Elephants are among the very few animals who can detect such sounds. On one account in December 2004, elephants in Thailand broke free from their chains at a tourist camp and stampeded to higher ground. This was on the same day that the 2004 tsunami hit. Scientists assume that this was because of their awareness to the infrasound waves made by the earthquake in the Indian Ocean.

Despite the elephants’ reaction, different animals have responded to infrasound in entirely opposite fashions. Some animals are not agitated by the pulses. However, scientists think that animals in zoos that are not affected by the signals may have become desensitized by their setting. They are more used to the unnatural noises from the city, maybe even infrasound. This proves that wild and village animals are more sensitive to the signals.

These pulses, even though to low to be detected by humans, have an effect on us. Certain types of eerie, mysterious, and spooky music invoke fear or sadness. Often horror films or depressing theatricals use low tones in their music. This corresponds with the low tones of infrasound that strike fear into elephants, warning that a conundrum is on its way.

Websites:

http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/episodes/can-animals-predict-disaster/listening-to-infrasound/133/

http://skepdic.com/infrasound.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infrasound

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