Photo: François Blanchoud | The origin of the crop circle remains a mystery.

Mysterious crop circle appears

A Swiss army pilot discovers a perfect geometric figure inscribed in a corn field at Corcelles-près-Payerne, raising questions about how it got there.

07/06/07 - 24 Heures

Locals in Payerne in the northern part of Vaud are scratching their heads after the discovery of a corn field where the crop has been flattened in a round shape 60 metres wide. The farmer who owns the field said he does not know who did the design and he is just as puzzled as others as to how it got there.

François Blanchoud, a Swiss army pilot, first spotted the crop circle, in the field near Payerne's military airport, while flying over the Broye region this week. Surprised by the appearance of the geometric figure, he asked his father Pierre, a specialist in unexplained phenomena, to accompany him on another flight to take photographs of it.

His father claims the crop circle is “authentic,” meaning no-one can say who made it. “The work is huge," he said."It is not humanly possible." Pierre Blanchoud said the design is too precise to have been the result of heavy rain and "it is not in the interest of the farmer to flatten the corn."

Pierre Blanchoud said about 20 percent of phenomena initially thought to be crop circles turn out to be made by humans. He claims the others are the result of "light balls" that produce micro- waves, which heat the corn and flatten the stalks. Crop circle enthusiasts, known as cereologists, have offered various paranormal and naturalistic explanations for them. However, in England two men revealed a few years ago that they created a variety of crop circles using planks, rope, hats and wire as their only tools.

The owner of the 7.5-hectare field containing the crop circle in Payerne said he will harvest the corn in 10 days. But the circle is expected to remain after the harvest as the flattened corn will not be collected.

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