Strange footage shows an unexplained black ring in a clear blue sky above the village of Shorthandy village, near Astana in Kazakhstan.
The phenomenon stayed in the heavens for several minutes before vanishing into thin air, before stunned locals who watched the spectacle on Saturday 3 April.
"It was like a black cloud. We saw it at around 4 pm on April 3. It dissipated like smoke, but it was completely odorless," Oleg Menshikov, a village resident, told Today.kz.
The video was over 50,000 times on YouTube, creating much speculation that it was an Unidentified Flying Object.
One viewer speculated it was an extra-terrestrial ship, another commentator stated that it was a vortex ring or smoke ring, formed in the atmosphere by a rising mass of warm air, which is also called a thermal microburst.
Northern Kazakhstan State University associate physics professor, Andrey Solodvnik, estimated the ring was about 100 metres in diameter and floated at an altitude of around 200 metres. He scotched rumours of it being a UFO, suggesting that the black cloud was just a large smoke ring that was the result of combustion.
There have been numerous UFO sightings in Kazakhstan. In 2008, an unidentified flying object was reported as having crashed into a river in the central Asian Republic.
A Tajik Airlines pilot named Captain Edward Rhodes and his two co-pilots claimed on 27 January 1994, that they encountered a UFO at 41,000 feet in a Boeing 747. The light from the object was of great and bright intensity, and the object went past the plane at higher speeds and altitudes than the plane was flying.
They sighted the object for over 40 minutes as it turned in circles, corkscrews and made 90 degree turns. The object then went horizontally upward and disappeared. Captain Rhodes was convinced that the object was extraterrestrial.
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