2) Incidents observed in the presence of the NIDS team
From the end of 1996 to the summer of 2004, a NIDS team led by Dr Colm Kelleher, biochemist, installs a permanent laboratory with a lot of equipment. Their aim is to gather data in the electromagnetic and magnetic regions, and of any UFO lights in the visible and UV spectrum. They have portable equipment including a light gathering device with Fresnel lenses, a spectrometer linked to a laptop computer, night vision binoculars, video cameras with night vision attachments, radio frequency analysers, microwaves detectors, etc (p. 100).
NIDS surveillance cameras
They are going to observe many incidents, but will fail to make any decisive records of them, with the exception of cattle mutilations. As early as 1997, an independent article is published in the American UFO Magazine (January/February, signed by reporter Zack Van Eyck), but the NIDS team remains very discreet. They publish some information on the NIDS website, especially a report on the cattle mutilation of March 1997, but it is only in 2002 that they invite journalist George Knapp to come to the ranch, and authorize him to talk about these events. He writes a long, two-part article which is published in a Las Vegas newspaper, and reproduced in several magazines. For instance, the British UFO Magazine (January and February 2003), and the American UFO Magazine (April/May and June/July 2003). Together with the publication of their book at the beginning of this year, the authors have also written an article in the internet magazine Sub Rosa (No 4, March 2006).
The observations by NIDS
So, what did they find? Within a few months after the beginning of their study, they are confronted with strange, and often frightening incidents. Like the Gorman family, they observe the same mysterious flying orbs, but fail to record them clearly. They install a lot of surveillance and recording equipment but, every time they are to the point of succeeding, the phenomenon eludes the trap and it looks more and more like a game of cat and mouse. As they put it in their article of March 2006, it looks like an elusive trickster was "a couple of steps ahead at all times", leaving an "occasional calling card in the form of a brutally ripped up calf carcass, unusual tracks in the snow, tantalizing infrared images, or that could wantonly destroy surveillance equipment while leaving insufficient physical evidence behind that might constitute a smoking gun".
On August 25, 1997, two members of NIDS, Jim and Mike (not their real names) are on a night watch, on the edge of a bluff, a hundred feet above the pasture, where some strange events have taken place before. Around 2:30 A.M., they begin to see a faint light just above the ground, invisible to the eyes but visible through powerful night vision binoculars, amplifying electronically low level ambient light. It's a dirty yellow light which expands to form a kind of "tunnel", about four feet in diameter. Suddenly, Mike perceives a dark creature, at least six feet tall, crawling out of it and walking away, whereupon the tunnel begins to shrink, and soon disappears. However, his companion Jim claims to have only seen the light. And although they have scientific equipment to measure radiation levels and magnetic spikes, they fail to record anything unusual. They have taken pictures, but "the photos were disappointing, showing only a single very faint blurry light in one and nothing on the rest of the roll of film."
So, they are left with no solid proof of that vision, but it does bring a clue, together with the the "openings" seen in the sky by the Gormans (not seen by the NIDS team), in favour of exciting speculations about so called "other dimensions", which are discussed at length at the end of the book. One of the main observations of the NIDS team, however, brings us back to a disturbing aspect of the whole story, the cattle mutilations.
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