Unidentified flying object puzzles onlookers in Italy (VIDEO)

A glowing forked object that appeared in the sky over Italy yesterday is provoking a healthy and completely rational discussion over its true identity. (Follow the jump for the video and the thoughts of ABC7's Bob Ryan.) Some of the comments:

Cruising passenger plane reflecting light of evening sun. As simple as that.

It's a meteorite.. seen one before myself. awesome to see in real life! :)

Uh, it was probably the asteroid that recently nearly missed earth.

It's a contrail reflecting off the sun. My god people are stupid.

This is an Iranian Satelite that was recently Supposedly put to orbit.

Black Operations or UFO, that's the question.


A news report from Pontedera, home of the Piaggio auto company – itself no stranger to bizarre moving objects – quotes one "Marianna" as saying the golden blip appeared around 10:40 p.m. She says (well, Google Translate says; take this translation with a grain of salt) that it "was a ball that was fast [and] followed the ellipse of the earth and disappeared after a few seconds. Left a trail of light like a falling star."

After it vanished, Marianna was left with a "pleasant feeling of tiredness," as if she had "absorbed energy."

Not to argue with one Italian woman's spongelike ability to suck power from the skies, but there are other possibilities here. This media outlet's senior meteorologist Bob Ryan thinks he knows what it is. Says Ryan:

Given the speed – not a meteor. It’s at sunset and the bright center section (I think he says in the video that he’s doubled the zoom) is the sun glinting off the plane’s fuselage/wings. The two trails sure look like contrails that exist for only a short distance behind the plane and are illuminated by the setting reddish sun and appear orange.

My immediate reaction was a little different:

But watch the video and judge for yourself: