AMAZING pictures show very rare “ice hair” discovered in a Scottish wood.
The remarkably thin strands of “hair” only form when the temperature is between 0.2 and 0.4 degrees centigrade above freezing, the air is humid, and a specific fungi is present to act as a catalyst.
The pictures, taken in Glenlednock, Comrie, Perthshire, show the result – a fine lacy and silky ice crystal forming on a moss-ridden tree branch.
Jaclyn Wilson, 40, from Comrie, captured the rare occurence on her mobile phone last week.
Speaking today she said: “It is very very fragile. You have got to be very careful as touching or it even breathing on it. It will disappear the ice hair. I was very excited to see it as it is a phenomenon which is very rare.”
Jaclyn shared the pictures to her Facebook page, Whitsnickst Photography, captioned with: “‘Ice Hair’- a type of ice that forms on dead wood and takes the shape of fine silky hair.”
Sarah Jane Tainsh commented on Jaclyn’s post saying: “Amazing. Looks like Santa’s beard.”
Heather Boyd posted: “Wow. That is amazing never heard of anything like that before.”
Angela Thorne said: “I’ve never seen anything like this before. Amazing.”
However, the rare ice formation was even mistaken for a living creature.
Toni Michelle added: “I genuinely thought the first pic was an owl with spread wings. The wood looks like a wee brown face.”
According to the Met Office, the first record of the phenomenon was made by Berliner Alfred Wegener in 1918 – the same man who came up with the theory of continental drift.
He proposed the theory for hair ice after observing the formation occur only on wet dead wood with a specific fungi that helped with the transformation of the ice to a smooth silky hair like look.