Via YouTube, David Sugarman

UFO at the Miami Air and Sea Show?

One of the common complaints heard about UFO sightings, particularly from skeptics, is that there are “never” any good photos or videos of these events. In reality, there are some fairly decent ones out there, but it’s true that many are blurry and nearly useless, offering little in the way of data to document the event. We may have been shown one of the exceptions to that rule this month when Florida resident and retired NBA agent David Sugarman published a brief bit of video he captured while attending the Hyundai Air and Sea Show in Miami Beach over the holiday weekend.

In the clip, which was posted on Twitter and Instagram, a jet plane is seen flying over a large crowd of people at the beach. Then something small enters the frame, perhaps having emerged from the water, though that is unclear. The object appears roughly spherical and reflects flashes of sunlight, suggesting a metallic surface. It appears to ascend rapidly at a more than eighty-degree angle, accelerating quickly until it flies out of the frame. But given the lack of perspective, it may have been approaching from the horizon. It may have been something else entirely. The Debrief interviewed Mr. Sugarman to find out as many details as possible regarding this event and obtained the original source files from his iPhone for analysis. We’ll begin with the original, slow-motion video as it was posted on Twitter.

Mr. Sugarman told us that he was filming that portion of the air show in slow-motion mode on his iPhone because the bright sunlight made it difficult to see the display on the phone and center the camera easily. He later saved a normal-speed clip of the same moment from the show. Here it is at normal speed.

The first thing to know about this event is that Mr. Sugarman did not see the UFO when it appeared. He only noticed it later when he was reviewing all of the pictures and videos he had taken during the air show. We asked him if he recalled seeing any of the other hundreds of spectators on that stretch of beach pointing or reacting at something unusual. He did not, nor do the other people visible on the beach in the video appear to have seen it. This is probably understandable since everyone’s attention was fixed on the much larger IFO (identified flying object, the jet) that was passing overhead. This fact alone makes this a rather unique sighting. In the vast majority of UFO reports, we rely on witness testimony but no electronic data is collected. In the Miami Beach incident, we have a video with no witness testimony despite there being hundreds of spectators on hand. But as we will demonstrate in a moment, Mr. Sugarman was not the only person to record this unusual object.

We submitted the source files to a videographer to analyze. He was able to extract the metadata from the files and found nothing unusual, expressing doubts that the videos had been altered. But he also was unable to rule out the possibility from that single view that the object in the video may have been “either a bird, not far out from the people swimming, or a bug much closer to the camera.” He went on to point out that the flickering appearance of the object suggests “wings flapping very quickly. Roughly 18 flaps in a half-second – which would really make a case for an insect flying by close to the camera.” After further analysis, the videographer still felt that a bug or bird was the “most likely” explanation.

A quick check of ornithology studies shows that the only bird that flaps its wings at that speed is the rufous hummingbird (up to 62 beats per second) and they do not dive for food under the ocean. Also, they are incredibly small to be seen at that distance. The fastest bird in the world is the Peregrine falcon which can reach speeds in excess of 200 miles per hour but only in a dive. They tend to ascend slowly, generally following lifting thermals. They do not accelerate at the apparent speeds seen in the video and they also do not hunt underwater.

The Twitter account Think Tank crafted an analysis of the video that is worth consideration.

That analysis appears to assume that the object is closer to the beach when it appears based on the fact that the apparent size (to the view of the camera) increases by a factor of five in terms of the number of pixels comprising it. This also would rule out the possibility of it being an insect flying in front of the camera in the view of this analyst. Had it been coming from over the horizon, it would have had to have been traveling at an almost unimaginable speed to reach the beach in barely two seconds. Further, there are several frames near the beginning of the clip where the object is seen with the ocean behind it rather than the sky, likely eliminating the theory of a high-altitude craft.

Of additional interest is the apparent “flashing” of the object when observed in slow motion. Some have speculated that this suggests an irregularly shaped object exhibiting rotation, with one reflective surface periodically flashing sunlight toward the camera. Others are speculating that it could be a blinking light, though the frequency of the blinking would be very rapid. We can consider this as a possible alternate explanation to the “flapping wings” theory.

As mentioned above, however, once Sugarman’s video began to go viral, other attendees went back to review their own videos and photos, discovering that they too had captured the unusual object. There was another flyover by a B-52 bomber in the same area. And more videos appear to show the same curious object flying in close proximity to the B-52. Watch this video posted by YouTube user Horis Box. Watch closely at roughly the 40-second mark and you will see what appears to be the same object flying below the bomber, heading north.

These additional recordings provide more context that was missing from the original Sugarman video. The object was visible from different angles, potentially casting doubt on the idea that it was a bug flying in front of a single camera. It was not far off on the horizon. It was relatively small, at least as compared to the jets, but was able to accelerate upward at a steep angle and speed that no bird should be able to achieve. This is a truly puzzling sighting with multiple witnesses capturing video of the event, most of them not even realizing that it had happened.

So what was the object (or objects) captured on video at the 2022 Miami Air and Sea Show? As with all such sightings, the conclusion is left to the observer unless additional (preferably physical) data comes to light. But it remains an intriguing addition to the growing body of UAP data being accumulated outside the vaults of the United States government.

Follow and connect with author Jazz Shaw on Twitter: @JazzShaw