Is there anything out there?
1 Nessie Hunters
The 1970's were a very busy time on Loch Ness for 'Nessie Hunters'.
One of these hunters was Dr Robert Rines,
who in 1970 used sonar on Loch Ness which provided
more proof that large objects inhabit the Loch.
Dr Rines, President of the Academy of Applied Science,
Boston, Massechusetts, led a team which was to put their
to such good use, that on the 20th of September
that year it detected objects intruding
beam at the same time as fish were seen to be disturbed.
During the summer of 1972 Dr.
Rines returned to the Loch bringing with them an
Edgerton underwater stroboscopic
camera and more sonar equipment.
2 How Big is It?
Experts estimated the flipper
to be from 6 to 8 ft in length.
American Smithsonian Institution,
one of several top bodies approached for comment
stated that the tail structure resembled
the shape of the tail of newts
The New England
stated that the flipper-like
structure certainly did not appear to
resemble the structure of any known
The British Natural History Museum,
that the photograph were genuine found that
'the sequence appears to show the passage of a large object'.
The sonar chart which recorded the passage of the objects
was subsequently analysed by several independent experts,
whose composite verdict
found that there are large animals
in Loch Ness which are at least 20 to 30ft
long with 'several segments,
body sections or projections such as humps'.
3 Malfunctioning equipment
For the next few years their
team had very little success
which had a lot to do with malfunctions
in the underwater camera rigs
In 1975 the biggest breakthrough
for Dr. Rines and his team came when a set of close-up
underwater photographs were taken which when released in
December of that year caused a worldwide sensation.
The pictures which show the head and body of one of the
creatures in remarkable detail,
were taken with the Edgerton strobe camera during the
expedition the previous June.
4 Media Excitement
For several months the pictures
were examined in secret in zoological
centres in Britain, America, Canada and Europe.
It was planned to release them in early December
at a scientific symposium
in Edinburgh to be attended by zoologists
from all over the world under the
of the famous British naturalist
and painter Sir Peter Scott.
News of the pictures leaked out at the end of November,
before the study of them was complete and
caused such excitement that the sponsors
of the symposium
who included the prestigious
Royal Society, felt it would be impossible
to conduct a proper scientific discussion
in such an atmosphere.
Consequently the symposium,
at which the whole Loch Ness controversy
would have been debated at length and hopefully resolved,
had to be cancelled.
In its place a meeting was held in the Grand Committee
Room at the Houses of Parliament at the instigation of David James,
the MP who had led the Investigation Bureau.
Before a large audience of members of both houses of Government,
scientists and journalists,
the Academy team presented the results of their research,
including the new underwater photographs,
together with supporting statements from eminent
zoologists who had been examining the material.
Dr. George Zug, the Curator of Reptiles
at the renowned
Smithsonian Institution in Washington said in his personal statement
: "I believe this data indicates the presence
of large animals in Loch Ness,
but is insufficient to indentify them".