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Do these photos show a lizard and a rat on Mars?

NASA’s Curiosity rover has taken some of the best photos of the Martian surface. There are both professional and amateur researchers who love reviewing and examining these incredible photos. And sometimes, those reviewing these photos claim incredible discoveries on Mars.

A rat on Mars? (Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS)

A rat on Mars? (Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS)

On May 29, Fox News published a story about a photo taken by Curiosity on September 28, 2012 that some believe shows a rat on Mars. Fox News explained, “The ‘creature’ was identified on the UFO Sightings Daily website, where its finder, Scott C. Waring, held tight to his opinion: That’s one darn cute rodent on Mars.” UFO Sightings Daily‘s information came from a video posted to YouTube by user UFO HuntingClouds on December 3, 2012. The video’s description on YouTube reads, “Here is a photo of a guinea pig photographed on Mars by the Curiosity Rover SOL 52! When zoomed in you can clearly see the animals face sticking out.”

Although some view this Martian object as a rodent, Fox News points out that others believe “the similarity in coloring and position mean it was most likely just a rock, fingering the psychology phenomenon known as pareidolia, a propensity to pick out faces from everyday objects and structures.”

Also on Wednesday, May 29, a similar story was published by both the Metro and the Daily Mail. But these stories are about a photo allegedly showing a lizard on Mars. And like the previous photo, the source for this claim is a YouTube video uploaded by UFO HuntingClouds. This video was uploaded on May 14, 2013, and its description states, “Here is a lizard that was found in a Mars Curiosity photo! This lizard clearly has an eye and a tail as well as all the other features that are common with lizards here on Earth.” However, the Metro suggests that “there could be digital trickery involved as the San Francisco Chronicle commented that in the original photo, the object appeared just as a rock . . .”

The original NASA photo of the alleged rodent can be viewed HERE.

The original NASA photo of the alleged lizard can be viewed HERE.

What do you think about these photos? Do they prove life on Mars, or are these, as Fox News suggests, illustrations of pareidolia? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below or on our Facebook page.

About Jason McClellan

Jason McClellan is a UFO journalist and the producer/co-host of the web series Spacing Out! He is also the web content manager and staff writer for OpenMinds.tv, and a co-organizer and technical producer of the International UFO Congress. As a founding member of Open Minds, Jason served as a writer and editor for the now defunct Open Minds magazine. He has appeared on Syfy, NatGeo, and, most recently, he co-starred on H2's Hangar 1: The UFO Files. ------ Follow Jason on Twitter @acecentric and subscribe to Jason's updates on Facebook.


  1. Whoa!
    So Fox News is following Scott Waring huh?
    That explains a bit.
    We had better hope that Scott NEVER gets his hands on the “smoking gun” if there is one.

  2. Stephen M Hopkins

    One thing’s for sure, there’s life out there somewhere, whether or not our rinky-dink instruments can tell them from a rock. I have a stupid theory that anything you can think of or dream about has happened at one time somewhere in the universe and is imprinted in your DNA. Here’s a song about a dream I had:

  3. I don’t understand the comment about digital trickery – if you check the original (to which you provide a link yourself) it’s the same as in the video.

    I think it’s a rock but the fact that most webs that have carried this item all include the San Francisco Chronicle quote shows a need to discredit this “evidence” in case someone might believe it (without feeling silly or ashamed) – now that would be dangerous!

  4. Just rocks

  5. The first “rat” picture has much going on in it. The second “lizard” picture is either just a rock or at best something long dead. The first picture is worth studying though…

    Pareidolia might be a really good theory if there was only one “rat” in the picture after many months of pictures from Mars. But, there are two rats near each other plainly in the picture. The second one is facing the camera from behind a bone shaped rock just below the rat everyone has been shown. The second rat seems to be sniffing the bone shaped rock that appears chewed on the left hand side. Meanwhile, the rock just in front of the first rat looks like an ET skull sunk in the now dried mud. It appears to have eye socket holes near the dirt line. Also, there appears to be a round rat hole towards the center of the main picture. This suggests where the rats get food and water. Mushrooms could live in an underground environment and make a workable life cycle. This leaves NASA’s credibility standing on thin air. Pareidolia is usually a good theory, but in this case, anyone looking at the original NASA picture for a few minutes can easily see two rats and a lot more going on.

    Look at the evidence and then see where it leads you. Don’t just assume what you see cannot be. Why bother sending a craft to Mars if we think we already know the answers to everything? The Fox News site leads to another site that has a link to the NASA original picture.

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