Mysterious lights were spotted Thursday night north of Austin over Brushy Creek and Cat Hallow.
Video was sent to FOX 7 by Gus McGiven. He was out walking with his friend Kyle Gomez near Cat Hallow in Round Rock.
“In real life when you see it, it’s a lot brighter than it actually is,” said Kyle Gomez.
Emily White says she and a friend were near Brushy Creek, close to Cedar Park, at the time. They also recorded a video clip of the lights.
“It was mesmerizing, honestly. It was so silent because if it was one light, then I would have maybe thought, ‘Oh, a helicopter, a plane, something like that.’ But like there was so many of them together,” said White.
FOX 7 asked White if she wondered if she was having a close encounter.
“I’ll be honest, kind of. I don’t know if I believe in all that, but, I don’t know. Maybe, I hear a lot of it in like America that that kind of things happens. I think it’s just because of like it didn’t make any noise at all, which I just thought was really odd. But, yeah, definitely, definitely felt like it was like the alien invasion or something on the way,” said White.
Gus McGiven and Kyle Gomez were also left with questions.
“I’ve never believed in UFO’s or anything like that, but I mean, I might, I might now. I don’t know, I’m not sure,” said McGiven.
The “UFOs” may actually have been UAVs, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles.
“I would have to say there’s nothing extraterrestrial involved with this. But I am not to say that that couldn’t be a possibility,” said drone expert Gene Robinson.
Robinson, who lives in Wimberley, trains drone pilots and flies several types of UAV platforms. He reviewed the video sent to FOX 7.
“My initial take on this is that it is very likely a drone based phenomena,” said Robinson.
At one point, the lights in one video clip zoomed off. Some people assume that what was in the air was projected by a laser. But Robinson noted it doesn’t seem like there was anything for a laser to reflect off of.
“That’s pretty unlikely. So, I’m still thinking that this may be someone testing their do-it-yourself drone swarm,” said Robinson.
A drone swarm is a big light show. They started taking flight about 2 years ago. Drone swarms can fill the sky, like those that flew over Shanghai in 2020. Galveston had one for a Fourth of July event. In March, at SXSW, a drone swarm generated lots of buzz.
“Pretty much expect this to be the future of night light shows, is these drones are going to be swarmed in as we’ve seen 100, 200, 300 drones,” said Robinson.
Gus and Kyle, after watching the SkyFOX Drone fly Friday afternoon, say what they saw was probably UAVs, but are not totally dismissing the UFO idea either.
“It was mesmerizing, honestly. It was so silent,” said White.
The FAA requires a waiver to fly at night, especially in a swarm configuration. Officials with the agency say they are checking to see if a waiver was granted.
Round Rock police say they did not get any calls about the lights.
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