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UFO Case Report:

The 1966 Tully Saucer Nest

Date: January 19, 1966
Location: Near Tully, Australia

The Tully "saucer nest" has a very special place in UFO lore. The famous Tully "UFO nest" affair of 1966 is one of the best known accounts of an apparent UFO landing report. It is the focus of a very important nexus in the pivotal question of UFO reality. 1966 was a major year for UFO activity in Australia.

Classification & Features

Type of Case/Report: MajorCase
Hynek Classification: CE2
Shape of Object(s): Disc
Special Features/Characteristics: Physical Trace, Landing, Animal Reaction

More Articles on this Case

Tully Saucer Nest

Loy Lawhon, About.com

An object rose out of the swamp. When I glanced at it, it was already 30 feet above the ground, and at about tree-top level. It was a large, grey, saucer-shaped object, convex on the top and bottom and measured some 25 feet across and 9 feet high. R

The 1966 Tully Saucer Nest

Bill Chalker, in "A Catalogue of Australian Physical Trace Cases"

The classic UFO landing at Horseshoe Lagoon near Tully, far north Queensland, and witnessed by farmer George Pedley, entered the term UFO "nest" into popular UFO parlance.  R

The 1966 Tully Saucer Nest: A Classic UFO Physical Trace Case

Bill Chalker, The Australasian Ufologist Magazine Vol.4 No.4, 1997

The Tully "saucer nest" has a very special place in UFO lore. The famous Tully "UFO nest" affair of 1966 is one of the best known accounts of an apparent UFO landing report. It is the focus of a very important nexus in the pivotal question of UFO reality. 1966 was a major year for UFO activity in Australia.

Full Report / Article

Source: UFO Research Queensland
[go to original source]

At about 9.00am on the clear sunny morning of Wednesday January 19 1966, George Pedly, a banana farmer at Euramo, near Tully (north Queensland) was driving a tractor with conventional electrical ignition, across the property of a neighbouring cane farmer. The farm track along which he drove wound its way towards and thence alongside what is locally known as Horseshoe Lagoon. This contained an area of water about 6 feet deep and one hundred feet across at its widest point, a total area of a little more than an acre. The greater part of the water was covered with a thick growth of water reeds, the stems of these about half an inch in thickness that protruded above the water to an average height of two feet.

As George approached the lagoon, he thought he detected an occasional misfire in the tractor motor. He leaned forward in his seat to listen, and almost immediately heard a distinct hissing noise which he thought momentarily was a tyre leaking air. Then, to his astonishment, a large saucer shaped object rose from the lagoon, ascended slowly to the level of the tree tops, tilted a little to one side, and then, in a fantastic burst of speed vanished in a south-westerly direction. Mr Pedley thought the object was about 25 feet in diameter, about 9 foot thick at the centre, silver-grey in colour and made no sound apart from the original hissing noise. The total duration of the sighting was about 4 seconds.

Mr Pedley jumped from the tractor and ran across to the lagoon. As he pushed his way through the 6 or 7 foot tall sword grass along the waters edge, he immediately saw a large circular area of slowly rotating water that was completely devoid of reeds. He further saw near the edge of the still slowly swirling water a patch of giant water couch grass, about a square yard of which had been clipped short, and the clippings removed. After a few minutes he returned to his tractor, started the motor, and went on his way. When questioned later, Mr Pedley was certain about restarting the motor, but could not remember whether he switched it off, it stalled or simply cut out when he left it, both of which were considered highly unlikely. Later that morning he came back past the lagoon and on further inspection saw for the first time the floating mass of reeds that had obviously come to the surface since his absence. The reeds were radially distributed in a noticably anticlockwise manner, and he was emphatic that at that time the reeds in the nest, as it came to be called, were quite green, as were all the other reeds in the lagoon.

At about mid-afternoon, he returned to the lagoon with Mr Albert Pennisi, the owner of the lagoon and surrounding property. Mr Pennisi waded out to the floating mass of reeds, and found that it was possible to swim beneath the mass, the water being quite clear and free from obstruction. But its most incredible feature, and one easily seen in photographs taken during the next 48 hours, was the amazingly clear impression of the UFO left on the surface of the nest. The outer perimeter was sharply down-thrusting, as if by a huge inverted saucer, with a perfectly circular central protruberance about 6 or 8 feet in diameter and possibly 18 inches deep.

An inspection of the surrounding area disclosed in the loose ploughed surface of an adjoining field some rather strange imprints. They led from the direction of the nest and extended a short distance into the ploughed field. They were described as being shaped like a tear drop, about 3 or 4 inches long and about 2 inches across at the widest point. They were spaced at 12 inch intervals in a direct line, one immediately behind the other. No plaster casts were taken, and no claim was made that these prints were somehow associated with the nest. Mr Pennisi made it quite clear that the prints were obliterated a few days later by the scores of people who tramped across the area on their way to view the nest. Mr Pennisi and his family were ridiculed however, due to what had happened on his farm. He was adamant that if such a thing ever happened again on his property, no-one would ever hear about it. This is the reason why the media were never informed of subsequent happenings.

On Saturday February 8, 1969, at 5.30am, a UFO monitoring device in the Pennisi home was triggered. The youngest son turned the instrument off, and then forgot about the incident. His father had left the house in the early hours of the morning, and upon returning noticed that the detector was off. When he was told why, he immediately drove to the lagoon and found, about 20 feet from the bank on the southern end, a new nest. This one measured 29 feet 6 inches and was perfectly circular.. The reeds had been extracted complete with roots from the floor of the lagoon, and they were floating in a very noticable clockwise distribution. Another nest was found at the extreme northern end of the lagoon, closer to the bank and much smaller but with all the characteristics of the larger one. Inspection of the area directly below the nests revealed it to be absolutely free of rubble or reed roots, almost as if it had been vacuumed. There were no signs of insect or algae life, and the water was remarkably clear and clean, with no particles in suspension. The floor of the lagoon was not muddy but appeared to be composed of a thick compressed mat of vegetation that was quite firm, if a little spongy, to walk on. About 25 feet away from the smaller nest was the protruding branch of a tree, which had an area of leaves about 6 feet long by 2 feet deep that were scorched or showed signs of browning. Other leaves on the same branch were quite green and healthy. The area below the leaves was thick with green healthy weeds and grass. In conclusion, and in the estimation of a botanist, there seems little likelihood of there being a natural/botanical explanation for the development of the nests in the Tully swamp.

Case ID: 65 edit: 65

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