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The beauty of nature

The beauty of nature
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In these slower times, it can be hard to get out and experience what nature has to offer with everyone being stuck inside. Escape to nature in these magical optical illusion photos that you won’t believe are real.

Sundog

Sundog
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This optical illusion that appears to be three suns shining down on the earth is called a sundog. It happens when sunlight reflects through icy clouds that contain crystals.

These are the most surreal natural phenomena—explained.

Brocken spectre

Brocken spectre
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This optical illusion makes it look like there is a tiny rainbow within a cloud. A Brocken spectre, or mountain spectre, occurs on mountain tops when the sun is low casting enlarged shadows on the tops of clouds. The optical illusion is that the shadow of the observer looks to be as far away as objects in the distance. The shadow is surrounded by coloured bands that are caused by a distraction on sunlight by water in the clouds.

These fascinating things captured by Google Earth.

Full moon and lonely tree

Full moon and lonely tree
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Have you ever noticed that when the moon is close to the horizon it looks ten times bigger than when it’s high in the sky? This phenomenon is known as the “moon illusion.” When the moon appears close to the ground it changes your depth perception and causes your brain to see a very large moon. If you hold your hand in a telescope shape and look at the moon without the horizon so close it will appear small in size again.

Atlas moth

Atlas moth
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The Atlas moth has two snake eyes on its wings to scare off predators. When they sense that something is coming to attack they open their wings and the predator backs off.

 

Web of water

Web of water
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Dew or rain caught on spider webs can create the illusion of water floating in mid-air.

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Lenticular clouds

Lenticular clouds
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No, those strange looking things in the sky aren’t UFOs, they’re actually clouds. Lenticular clouds form when warm air moves over a mountain or mountain range and the air on the downwind side of the mountain remains cool.

These are some places on Earth that are still unmapped.

Dracula orchid

Dracula orchid
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At first glance, this unique flower looks like a face. The flower is known as the Dracula orchid and the “eyes” and “mouth” are just small petals in the centre of the flower.

Underwater waterfall

Underwater waterfall
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Underwater waterfalls do exist, but this spot along the shoreline of Mauritius isn’t one of them. You’re actually seeing sand being pushed off of an underwater shelf called the Mascarene Plateau.

You probably never learned about these crazy facts about earth in school.

Jacob's Well

Jacob's Well
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While this natural wonder is very deep, from certain angles it looks like it goes all the way to the dark centre of the earth. Jacob’s Well, located outside of Austin, Texas, is a great place to cool off in the hot summers, but can also be dangerous for those that dare to explore the cave below.

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Philippines lockdown update:
Please be advised that due to the current lockdown in the Philippines, we hope to have the April print issue available by the middle of July, and the May, June and July issues available by the end of July, but this is dependent on when local lockdown restrictions are lifted. We sincerely apologise for this inconvenience. Thank you and stay safe!
– The Reader’s Digest team