Saturday, October 26, 2013

Britain’s Very Own X-Files and Their Space Slime Mystery

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Britain’s Very Own X-Files and Their Space Slime Mystery

By Richard Gray
The Daily Telegraph

      It is Britain’s own version of The X-Files — a unit of experts who specialize in unravelling the origins of mysterious slimes, animals and objects.

Tucked away in a quiet corner of the Natural History Museum in London are a series of laboratories that would not be out of place in the long-running science fiction series.

This is the Identification and Advisory Service, whose job it is to scrutinize the array of strange objects discovered by members of the public — from apparent dragon skulls to objects that appear to come from outer space.

The most recent case is particularly baffling — a mass of slime found on a nature reserve after reports of a meteor streaking through the skies.

Samples of the “intergalactic jelly” were sent to the museum from the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds reserve in Somerset. But laboratory tests failed to provide any clues.

“The slime is still a genuine mystery,” said Chesca Rogers, who is leading the effort to identify the gelatinous material. “There are stories in folklore that link it with meteor sightings. Some people think it might be unfertilized frog spawn, others think it is a fungus, or a slime mould or that it is plant-related.” . . .

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