Experts set to reveal ‘plausible’ Loch Ness Monster theory following major investigation

This shadowy something is what someone says is a photo of the Loch Ness monster in Scotland.  (AP PHOTO)
A new 'plausible theory' about the Loch Ness monster is due to be announced (AP)

Scientists are set to reveal their “plausible” theory about sightings of the mythical Loch Ness Monster.

The global team, led by Professor Neil Gemmell, are set to reveal the results of their environmental DNA (eDNA) sampling of the waters after years of theories about Nessie.

The team identified tiny genetic remnants left behind by life in the Highland loch to establish a detailed list of all life living in the waters.

During their research, launched last June, 250 water samples were taken from the length, breadth and depth of Loch Ness.

The DNA from those samples was extracted and sequenced, resulting in around 500 million sequences that have now been analysed against existing databases.

Professor Gemmell, of the University of Otago in New Zealand, will reveal the full findings of the study in September.

He said: “There have been over a thousand reported sightings of something in Loch Ness which have driven this notion of a monster being in the water.

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“From those sightings there are around four main explanations about what has been seen.

“Our research essentially discounts most of those theories – however, one theory remains plausible.”

As creatures move through the loch, they leave tiny fragments of DNA through their skin, scales, feathers, fur, faeces and urine, which can be used to identify the creature.

In the foreground is a small strip of pebbles, some of which has been washed by the water lapping over them.  Then we have the large expanse of Loch Ness, by volume the largest freshwater loch in Scotland, looking dark and imposing with its very murky water, due to a high peat content.  We can see the down the 23 mile length of Loch Ness, which is surrounded by hills and mountains.  The loch follows the line of the Great Glen Fault, and is reputed to hold the famous Loch Ness Monster, or Nessie as it is affectionately known.  Loch Ness is located just outside Inverness in the Highlands of Scotland
Water samples were taken from the length, breadth and depth of Loch Ness for the study (Getty)

VisitScotland said the Nessie phenomenon is worth millions to the Scottish economy, with hundreds of thousands of visitors travelling to Loch Ness and Drumnadrochit every year to catch a glimpse of the mythical monster.

Unusual items previously found in the loch include a 30ft long Loch Ness monster model discovered on its bed in 2016 during a sonar search by Kongsberg Maritime and supported by The Loch Ness Project and VisitScotland.

The model was a prop from the 1970 film The Private Life Of Sherlock Holmes, directed by Billy Wilder and starring Robert Stephens and Christopher Lee.

It is believed the model sank after its buoyant humps were removed.

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