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THE SARGASSO SEA/BERMUDA TRIANGLE

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Author Topic: THE SARGASSO SEA/BERMUDA TRIANGLE  (Read 4613 times)
Bianca
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« on: October 19, 2007, 01:01:25 pm »










                                                  THE SARGASSO SEA




The Sargasso Sea is an elongated region in the middle of the North Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by ocean currents. On the west it is bounded by the Gulf Stream; on the north, by the North Atlantic Current; on the east, by the Canary Current; and on the south, by the North Atlantic Equatorial Current. It is roughly 700 statute miles wide and 2,000 statute miles long (1,100 km wide and 3,200 km long). It stretches from roughly 70 degrees west to 40 degrees west, and from 25 degrees north to 35 degrees north. Bermuda is near the western fringes of the sea. The Sargasso Sea is the only sea without shores.

The very salty Sargasso Sea is often regarded as being lifeless, though it is home to some seaweed of the genus Sargassum. This seaweed floats en masse on the surface there. The Sargasso Sea also plays a major role in the migration of the European eel and the American eel. The larvae of both species hatch there and go to Europe and/or the East Coast of North America. Later in life, they try to return to the Sargasso Sea to lay eggs. It is also believed that after hatching, young Loggerhead Sea Turtles use currents such as the Gulf Stream to travel to the Sargasso Sea where they use the Sargassum as cover from predation until they are mature.

Portuguese sailors were among the first to discover this region in the 15th century, although it may have been known to earlier mariners, as a poem by the late 4th century AD author Rufus Festus Avienus describes a portion of the Atlantic as being covered with seaweed. Christopher Columbus and his men also noted the Sargasso Sea, and brought reports of the masses of seaweed on the surface.

Due to its proximity to Bermuda (and being in the Bermuda Triangle), the sea is credited with some of the infamous disappearances there. That stigma is further enforced by the sometimes total lack of wind over the sea, and the possibility for modern engines to become entangled in the sargassum, stranding most vessels. Thus, it is sometimes called the "graveyard of ships."

The Sargasso Sea was the subject of a recent metagenomics effort called the Global Ocean Sampling (GOS) survey, by J. Craig Venter and others, to evaluate the diversity of microbial life there. The results have indicated that, unlike previously thought, the area has a wide variety of prokaryotic life.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2007, 02:13:12 pm by Bianca2001 » Report Spam   Logged

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Bianca
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« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2007, 01:06:21 pm »








The Bermuda Triangle, also known as the Devil's Triangle, is a region of the northwestern Atlantic Ocean in which a number of aircraft and surface vessels have disappeared in what are said to be circumstances that fall beyond the boundaries of human error or acts of nature. Some of these disappearances have been attributed to the paranormal, a suspension of the laws of physics, or activity by extraterrestrial beings by popular culture.

 Although a substantial documentation exists showing numerous incidents to have been inaccurately reported or embellished by later authors, several others remain unexplained.
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Tom Hebert
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« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2007, 01:07:26 pm »

This was the location of the original Atlantis, according to Cayce.

Isn't this also the site where eels from both sides of the Atlantic come to spawn?  Why would they do that unless a landmass happened to be located there at one time?
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« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2007, 01:11:20 pm »





Hi, Tom!


Yes, on both questions.

I'll get to the eels as soon as I am finished with the Bermuda Triangle.

It seems a shame that this important part of the Atlantic has not been discussed much......
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« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2007, 01:13:05 pm »










The Triangle area



 
The area of the Triangle varies by author.The boundaries of the Triangle vary with the author; some stating its shape is akin to a trapezium covering the Straits of Florida, the Bahamas, and the entire Caribbean island area east to the Azores; others add to it the Gulf of Mexico. The more familiar, triangular boundary in most written works has as its points Miami, Florida; San Juan, Puerto Rico; and the mid-Atlantic island of Bermuda, with most of the accidents concentrated along the southern boundary around the Bahamas and the Florida Straits.

The area is one of the most heavily-sailed shipping lanes in the world, with ships crossing through it daily for ports in the Americas and Europe, as well as the Caribbean Islands. Cruise ships are also plentiful, and pleasure craft regularly go back and forth between Florida and the islands. It is also a heavily flown route for commercial and private aircraft heading towards Florida, the Caribbean, and South America from points north.

The Gulf Stream ocean current flows through the Triangle after leaving the Gulf of Mexico; its current of five to six knots may have played a part in a number of disappearances. Sudden storms can and do appear, and in the summer to late fall the occasional hurricane strikes the area. The combination of heavy maritime traffic and tempestuous weather makes it inevitable that vessels could founder in storms and be lost without a trace — especially before improved telecommunications, radar, and satellite technology arrived late in the 20th century.
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« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2007, 01:19:53 pm »









History of the Triangle story





A Compass starts to move its own here and there when a flight reaches Bermuda Triangle.

According to the Triangle authors, Christopher Columbus was the first person to document something strange in the Triangle, reporting that he and his crew observed "strange dancing lights on the horizon", flames in the sky, and at another point he wrote in his log about bizarre compass bearings in the area.



From his log book, dated October 11, 1492 he wrote:

"The land was first seen by a sailor (Rodrigo de Triana), although the Admiral at ten o'clock that evening standing on the quarter-deck saw a light, but so small a body that he could not affirm it to be land; calling to Pero Gutiérrez, groom of the King's wardrobe, he told him he saw a light, and bid him look that way, which he did and saw it; he did the same to Rodrigo Sánchez of Segovia, whom the King and Queen had sent with the squadron as comptroller, but he was unable to see it from his situation. The Admiral again perceived it once or twice, appearing like the light of a wax candle moving up and down, which some thought an indication of land. But the Admiral held it for certain that land was near..."



Modern scholars checking the original log books have surmised that the lights he saw were the cooking fires of Taino natives in their canoes or on the beach; the compass problems were the result of a false reading based on the movement of a star. The flames in the sky were undoubtedly falling meteors, which are easily seen while at sea.

The first article of any kind in which the legend of the Triangle began appeared in newspapers by E.V.W. Jones on September 16, 1950, through the Associated Press.

Two years later, Fate magazine published "Sea Mystery At Our Back Door", a short article by George X. Sand in the October 1952 issue covering the loss of several planes and ships, including the loss of Flight 19, a group of five U.S. Navy TBM Avenger bombers on a training mission. Sand's article was the first to lay out the now-familiar triangular area where the losses took place.

Flight 19 alone would be covered in the April 1962 issue of American Legion Magazine. The article was titled "The Lost Patrol", by Allen W. Eckert, and in his story it was claimed that the flight leader had been heard saying "We are entering white water, nothing seems right. We don't know where we are, the water is green, no white."

It was also claimed that officials at the Navy board of inquiry stated that the planes "flew off to Mars." "The Lost Patrol" was the first to connect the supernatural to Flight 19, but it would take another author, Vincent Gaddis, writing in the February 1964 Argosy Magazine to take Flight 19 together with other mysterious disappearances and place it under the umbrella of a new catchy name: "The Deadly Bermuda Triangle"; he would build on that article with a more detailed book, Invisible Horizons, the next year.

Others would follow with their own works: John Wallace Spencer (Limbo of the Lost, 1969); Charles Berlitz (The Bermuda Triangle, 1974); Richard Winer (The Devil's Triangle, 1974), and many others, all keeping to some of the same supernatural elements outlined by Eckert.
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Bianca
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« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2007, 01:23:48 pm »








Kusche's explanation





Lawrence David Kusche, a research librarian from Arizona State University and author of The Bermuda Triangle Mystery: Solved (1975) has challenged this trend.

Kusche's research revealed a number of inaccuracies and inconsistencies between Berlitz's accounts and statements from eyewitnesses, participants, and others involved in the initial incidents. He noted cases where pertinent information went unreported, such as the disappearance of round-the-world yachtsman Donald Crowhurst, which Berlitz had presented as a mystery, despite clear evidence to the contrary.

Another example was the ore-carrier Berlitz recounted as lost without trace three days out of an Atlantic port when it had been lost three days out of a port with the same name in the Pacific Ocean.

 Kusche also argued that a large percentage of the incidents which have sparked the Triangle's mysterious influence actually occurred well outside it. Often his research was surprisingly simple: he would go over period newspapers and see items like weather reports that were never mentioned in the stories.



Kusche came to several conclusions:

The number of ships and aircraft reported missing in the area was not significantly greater, proportionally speaking, than in any other part of the ocean.

In an area frequented by tropical storms, the number of disappearances that did occur were, for the most part, neither disproportionate, unlikely, nor mysterious; furthermore, Berlitz and other writers would often fail to mention such storms.

The numbers themselves had been exaggerated by sloppy research. A boat listed as missing would be reported, but its eventual (if belated) return to port may not be reported.

Some disappearances had in fact, never happened. One plane crash was said to have taken place in 1937 off Daytona Beach, Florida, in front of hundreds of witnesses; a check of the local papers revealed nothing.



Kusche concluded that:

"The Legend of the Bermuda Triangle is a manufactured mystery... perpetuated by writers who either purposely or unknowingly made use of misconceptions, faulty reasoning, and sensationalism." (Epilogue, p. 277)



In recent years, however, several authors, most notably Gian J. Quasar, have raised several questions as to the veracity of Kusche's findings, including, but not limited to, why Kusche so often brought up as evidence for his claims cases that were already well-known before the writing of his work as not being Triangle incidents; his misidentification and mislocation of several ship and aircraft incidents that are well-documented, but then using that inability to properly identify the craft as "proof" that they never existed; and in other examples openly claiming possibilities for foul weather for certain disappearances where it can be verified that none existed.
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« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2007, 01:26:07 pm »








Other responses





The marine insurer Lloyd's of London has determined the Triangle to be no more dangerous than any other area of ocean, and does not charge unusual rates for passage through the region. United States Coast Guard records confirm their conclusion. In fact, the number of supposed disappearances is relatively insignificant considering the number of ships and aircraft which pass through on a regular basis.

The Coast Guard is also officially skeptical of the Triangle, noting that they collect and publish, through their inquiries, much documentation contradicting many of the incidents written about by the Triangle authors.

In one such incident involving the 1972 explosion and sinking of the tanker V.A. Fogg in the Gulf of Mexico, the Coast Guard photographed the wreck and recovered several bodies, despite one Triangle author stating that all the bodies had vanished, with the exception of the captain, who was found sitting in his cabin at his desk, clutching a coffee cup (Limbo of the Lost by John Wallace Spencer, 1973 edition).

Skeptical researchers, such as Ernest Taves and Barry Singer, have noted how mysteries and the paranormal are very popular and profitable. This has led to the production of vast amounts of material on topics such as the Bermuda Triangle.

They were able to show that some of the pro-paranormal material is often misleading or not accurate, but its producers continue to market it. They have therefore claimed that the market is biased in favour of books, TV specials, et cetera. which support the Triangle mystery and against well-researched material if it espouses a skeptical viewpoint.
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« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2007, 01:29:09 pm »








                                                    Natural explanations







Methane hydrates






 
Worldwide distribution of confirmed or inferred offshore gas hydrate-bearing sediments, 1996.
Source: USGS




False-color image of the Gulf Stream flowing north through the western Atlantic Ocean. (NASA)
USS Memphis in 1916, hard aground in the Dominican Republic after an encounter with a freak wave.



(U.S. Navy)An explanation for some of the disappearances has focused on the presence of vast fields of methane hydrates on the continental shelves. Laboratory experiments carried out in Australia have proven that bubbles can, indeed, sink a scale model ship by decreasing the density of the water; any wreckage consequently rising to the surface would be rapidly dispersed by the Gulf Stream. It has been hypothesized that periodic methane eruptions (sometimes called "mud volcanoes") may produce regions of frothy water that are no longer capable of providing adequate buoyancy for ships. If this were the case, such an area forming around a ship could cause it to sink very rapidly and without warning.

Airplanes may also be susceptible to any freak methane releases. Methane also has the ability to cause a piston engine to stall when released into the atmosphere, even at an atmospheric concentration as low as 1%[citation needed]. But although methane is lighter than air, the altimeter of an airplane traveling through it would not, contrary to popular belief, read that the airplane is higher than it really is, causing navigational problems. (Altimeters measure pressure, not the density of air.)

A white paper was published in 1981 by the United States Geological Survey about the appearance of hydrates in the Blake Ridge area, off the southeastern United States coast.

 However, according to a USGS web page, no large releases of gas hydrates are believed to have occurred in the Bermuda Triangle for the past 15,000 years.
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« Reply #9 on: October 19, 2007, 01:34:36 pm »










Compass variations





Compass problems are one of the cited phrases in many Triangle incidents. The North Magnetic Pole is not the North Pole; rather it is the north end of the earth's magnetic field. The North Magnetic Pole does wander, but so slowly that the wandering would not be noticeable on time scale of a sea or air voyage.

In general, the compass does not point exactly the direction of the North Magnetic Pole, but rather the compass needle aligns itself to the local geomagnetic field, which can vary in a complex manner over the Earth's surface, as well as over time.

The angular difference between magnetic north and true north (defined in reference to the Geographic North Pole), at any particular location on the Earth's surface, is called the magnetic declination. Most map coordinate systems are based on true north, and magnetic declination is often shown on map legends so that the direction of true north can be determined from north as indicated by a compass.

The line of zero declination in the U.S. runs from the North Magnetic Pole through Lake Superior and across the western panhandle of Florida. Along this line, true north is the same as magnetic north. West of the line of zero declination, a compass will give a reading that is east of true north.

Conversely, east of the line of zero declination, a compass reading will be west of true north. Since the North Magnetic Pole has been slowly migrating toward the northwest, some twenty or more years ago the line of zero declination went through the Triangle, giving sailors an alignment of true north with magnetic north.

Some have theorized the possibility of unusual local magnetic anomalies in the area, however these have not been shown to exist.
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« Reply #10 on: October 19, 2007, 01:36:28 pm »








Hurricanes



Hurricanes are extremely powerful storms which are spawned in the Atlantic near the equator, and have historically been responsible for thousands of lives lost and billions of dollars in damage. The sinking of Francisco de Bobadilla's Spanish fleet in 1502 was the first recorded instance of a destructive hurricane. In 1988, Hurricane Gilbert, one of the most powerful hurricanes in history, set back Jamaica's economy by three years. These storms have in the past caused a number of incidents related to the Triangle.





Gulf Stream



The Gulf Stream is an ocean current that originates in the Gulf of Mexico, and then through the Straits of Florida, into the North Atlantic. In essence, it is a river within an ocean, and like a river, it can and does carry floating objects. A small plane making a water landing or a boat having engine trouble will be carried away from its reported position by the current, as happened to the cabin cruiser Witchcraft on December 22, 1967, when it reported engine trouble near the Miami buoy marker one mile from shore, but was not there when a Coast Guard cutter arrived.





Freak waves



Extremely large waves can appear seemingly at random, even in calm seas. One such rogue wave caused the Ocean Ranger to capsize in 1982, then the worlds largest offshore platform. There is, however, no particular reason to believe rogue waves are more common in the Bermuda region, and this could not explain loss of airplanes.
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« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2007, 01:38:58 pm »








                                                        Acts of Man





Human error



One of the most cited explanations in official inquiries as to the loss of any aircraft or vessel is human error. Whether deliberate or accidental, humans have been known to make mistakes resulting in catastrophe, and losses within the Bermuda Triangle are no exception.

For example, the Coast Guard cited a lack of proper training for the cleaning of volatile benzene residue as a reason for the loss of the tanker V.A. Fogg in 1972. Human stubbornness may have caused businessman Harvey Conover to lose his sailing yacht, the Revonoc, as he sailed into the teeth of a storm south of Florida on January 1, 1958.

It should be noted that many losses remain inconclusive due to the lack of wreckage which could be studied, a fact cited on many official reports.





Deliberate acts of destruction



This can fall into two categories: acts of war, and acts of piracy. Records in enemy files have been checked for numerous losses; while many sinkings have been attributed to surface raiders or submarines during the World Wars and documented in the various command log books, many others which have been suspected as falling in that category have not been proven; it is suspected that the loss of USS Cyclops in 1918, as well as her sister ships Proteus and Nereus in World War II, were attributed to submarines, but no such link has been found in the German records.

Piracy, as defined by the taking of a ship or small boat on the high seas, is an act which continues to this day. While piracy for cargo theft is more common in the western Pacific and Indian oceans, drug smugglers do steal pleasure boats for smuggling operations, and may have been involved in crew and yacht disappearances in the Caribbean.

Historically famous pirates of the Caribbean (where piracy was common from about 1560 to the 1760s) include Edward Teach (Blackbeard) and Jean Lafitte. Lafitte is sometimes said to be a Triangle victim himself.

Another form of pirate operated on dry land. Bankers or wreckers would shine a light on shore to misdirect ships, which would then founder on the shore; the wreckers would then help themselves to the cargo. It is possible that these wreckers also killed any crew who protested.

Nags Head, North Carolina, was named for the wreckers' practice of hanging a lantern on the head of a hobbled horse as it walked along the beach.
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« Reply #12 on: October 19, 2007, 01:41:36 pm »









                                                    Popular theories





The following theories have been used in the past by the Triangle writers to explain the incidents:





Atlantis



An explanation for some of the disappearances pinned the blame on left-over technology from Atlantis. Reputed psychic Edgar Cayce claimed that evidence for Atlantis would be discovered just off Bimini in 1968. New Agers view the Bimini Road as either a road, wall, or pier meant to service ships bound for Atlantis from Central and South America, or a breakwater built to protect fishing boats. The wall may also have a natural origin.





UFOs



Some theorists claim extraterrestrials are the reason of disappearances by abducting ships and aircraft. [citation needed] This was given a boost when topics like ESP, telekinesis, clairvoyance, and the like flowered in the middle-to-late 1960s, and was used as storylines for popular films like Close Encounters of the Third Kind and The UFO Incident.





Time warp



The proponents of this theory state that the many ships and planes entered a time warp to a different time or dimension on the other side, meaning that their crews could still be alive there, living new lives in another time period of the past or the future – or even possibly in a parallel universe. [citation needed] Usually, the ship or aircraft in the story enters this dimension by way of a cloud. This has been a popular subject in science fiction.





Anomalous phenomena



Charles Berlitz, grandson of a distinguished linguist and author of various additional books on anomalous phenomena, has kept in line with this extraordinary explanation, and attributed the losses in the Triangle to anomalous or unexplained forces.
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« Reply #13 on: October 19, 2007, 01:45:13 pm »


US Navy TBF Grumman Avenger flight, similar to Flight 19.
This photo had been used by various Triangle authors to
illustrate Flight 19 itself. (US Navy)






                                                                    Flight 19





Flight 19 was a training flight of TBM Avenger bombers that went missing on December 5, 1945 while over the Atlantic. The impression is given that the flight encountered unusual phenomena and anomalous compass readings, and that the flight took place on a calm day under the leadership of an experienced pilot, Lt. Charles Carroll Taylor. Adding to the intrigue is that the Navy's report of the accident was ascribed to "causes or reasons unknown."

It is believed that Charles Taylor's mother wanted to save Charles's reputation, so she made them write "reasons unknown" when actually Charles was 50 km NW from where he thought he was.



While the basic facts of this version of the story are essentially accurate, some important details are missing.

The weather was becoming stormy by the end of the incident; only Lt. Taylor had any significant flying time, but he was not familiar with the south Florida area and had a history of getting lost in flight, having done so three times during World War II, and being forced to ditch his planes twice into the water; and naval reports and written recordings of the conversations between Lt. Taylor and the other pilots of Flight 19 do not indicate magnetic problems.
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« Reply #14 on: October 19, 2007, 01:51:40 pm »


Brigantine similar to the
Mary Celeste







Mary Celeste



The mysterious abandonment in 1872 of the Mary Celeste is often but inaccurately connected to the Triangle, the ship having been abandoned off the coast of Portugal.

Many theories have been put forth over the years to explain the abandonment, including alcohol fumes from the cargo and insurance fraud.

The event is possibly confused with the sinking of a ship with a similar name, the Mari Celeste, off the coast of Bermuda on September 13, 1864, which is mentioned in the book Bermuda Shipwrecks by Dan Berg.






Ellen Austin



The Ellen Austin supposedly came across an abandoned derelict, placed on board a prize crew, and attempted to sail with it to New York in 1881.

According to the stories, the derelict disappeared; others elaborating further that the derelict reappeared minus the prize crew, then disappeared again with a second prize crew on board.

A check of Lloyd's of London records proved the existence of the Meta, built in 1854; in 1880 the Meta was renamed Ellen Austin. There are no casualty listings for this vessel, or any vessel at that time, that would suggest a large number of missing men placed on board a derelict which later disappeared.





Teignmouth Electron
 Donald Crowhurst
 
Teignmouth Electron, as she was on July 10, 1969.Donald Crowhurst was a sailor competing in the Sunday Times Golden Globe Race of 1968-69. His boat, a trimaran named Teignmouth Electron, left England on October 31, 1968; it was found abandoned south of the Azores on July 10, 1969.



Most writers on the Triangle would stop there (only Winer elaborated on the facts), leaving out the evidence recovered from Crowhurst's logbooks which showed deception as to his position in the race and increasing irrationality. His last entry was June 29; it was assumed he jumped over the side a short time later.
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