In China, a viral video clip shows a phenomenon where "worm rain" falls from the sky, opening up a can of worms, quite literally. If you are easily disgusted, it is best to avert your gaze now.
The video has left people puzzled as it displays a line of stationary vehicles that are completely coated in what appears to be slimy creatures.
What adds to the remarkable nature of the video is that while new 'worms' fall from the heavens, onlookers carry on with their daily routines, as evidenced by a woman using an umbrella.
This occurrence took place in the province of Liaoning in China, which shares a border with North Korea. However, if the Hermit Kingdom also encountered this unusual shower, we may never become aware of it.
At the moment, Chinese officials have not provided any statement regarding the situation, but specialists have been active proposing their hypotheses to explain the occurrence.
A proposal put forth is that the presumed 'worms' may be poplar flowers, which develop into extended catkins resembling hairy caterpillars.
As elucidated by an individual on Twitter: "These are not worms or animals, but flower stalks dropped from trees."
Another wrote: "The things that fall from poplar trees in spring are not caterpillars, but inflorescences of poplar trees. When poplar flower spikes start to fall, it means that they are about to bloom."
Others contended that the worms might have been carried by strong winds before descending on Liaoning, a phenomenon that has occurred repeatedly in the past.
In December 2021, inhabitants of Texarkana in East Texas were also bewildered as groups of fish started to fall from the heavens.
The Library of Congress states that the occurrence of animal rain is so infrequent that it has never been adequately researched to determine conclusively how it transpires.
Nevertheless, meteorologists have hypothesized that 'tornadic waterspouts' could be the cause, where the tornadoes draw small aquatic creatures into their vortices before discharging them elsewhere.
An alternative hypothesis proposes that robust air currents generated by tornadoes or other weather phenomena may have a similar effect.
Despite being extremely uncommon, there have been some documented instances of animal rain over the centuries in regions susceptible to tornadoes.
In 1873, Kansas City newspapers reported about frogs raining down from the sky, whereas in 2009, tadpoles were observed falling from the heavens in Ishikawa Prefecture, Japan.
Regarding this recent incident, an individual tweeted: "It is rare but not impossible for earthworms to fall from the sky during rain, a phenomenon called 'earthworm rain'."
"This usually occurs when specific weather conditions occur, such as strong winds that lift the earthworms and carry them into the clouds, where they can be carried long distances before falling back to the ground with the rain."
As the conjecture continues, netizens have been active sharing their opinions on the video, with one person jokingly saying: "Somebody clicked the wrong button on the weather manipulator 6000."
"The matrix is broken," quipped another, and, for all the Murakami fans out there, a third added: "Kafka on the shore?"