The Range News is Maleny's premium Weekly Newspaper delivered each Friday
to the People of the Sunshine Coast Hinterland from Glasshouse to
Kenilworth and west to Peachester.

Phone 07 5494 2454
Fax 07 54943268
Email: rangenews@dnet.aunz.com

Farmer has answer to
crop circle mystery

by Cameron Outridge

Conondale farmer Doug Sands says he knows what caused the recent crop circles at Conondale.   Mr Sands, who owns the property concerned, said the crop circles were formed by intense whirly-whirly winds.    Mr Sands was not surprised at the effect which left four circles of flattened grass of varying sizes.

“I’m sorry to say your crop circles story is bull,’’ he said.   “I’ve seen it happen a dozen times.    The wind comes along and it hits a line of trees and forms a swirling motion and it leaves these circles – and it’s as simple as that.

“I’ve been down here 34 years and I’ve seen it that many times.   I’ve seen it actually happen.   It lifts leaves and rubbish up as it does it.   It leaves a perfect circle then it lifts and lays another one.   That’s why you get a series of circles in a line – perfect circles.

“The effect is exaggerated this time because the grass is so long.”    But what about the fact that the seeds were still attached to the seed heads?   Surely they would have been blown off.

“Grass seed heads will hold them until they are ripe and then they will drop them.   So the seeds that remain are probably not mature seeds.  “Every time we get high winds it happens.    It usually happens along a tree line.   The wind is deflected off the trees.   “I used to grow sorghum and it was a problem because the wind would flatten the sorghum in places and I’d have to harvest it by running the tractor against the grain of the flattened circle to pick it up.

“It’s just a whirly-whirly that’s all.”

Our thanks once again to Cameron & Tanya Outridge
of the Range News Newspaper for this story.