A mysterious structure which has appeared in the Peruvian Amazon - and appears to be a spire surrounded by a white picket fence - is baffling scientists. 

The first of the structures was spotted just months ago on June 7, by Troy Alexander, a graduate student at Georgia Tech.

He discovered the bizarre formation on the bottom of some blue tarpaulin close to the Tambopata Research Center, in southeastern Peru.

He then found three more of the enclosures on tree trunks in the jungle, reports.

He told the site the fences measured around two centimeters across.

He has since posted pictures on websites to find out their origin and any detail explaining what they are.

To date - no one has been able to identify the structures.

Phil Torres, a biologist from Tambopata, posted a link on Twitter to the pictures, equally baffled as to their origin.

William Eberhard, an entomologist with the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute told the site he had no idea what made it or what it was.

Norm Platnick, curator emeritus of spiders at the American Museum of Natural History, added: 'I’ve seen the photo, but have no idea what animal might be responsible.'

Linda Rayor, of Cornell University, hazarded a guess that it might be a 'lacewing' but admitted she did not know either what it was.

Some have suggested it was created by the Urodidae family or species, known for weaving basket-like cocoons, or that it is an incomplete cocoon, or the work of a moth in the Bucculatricidae family.

Responses to "Scientists have found enigmatic structures in the Peruvian Amazon (Photos)"

  1. Neat fences, made to either keep something out or to keep something in. It's amazing what insects and spiders can create. Whatever made them hopefully is discovered so we can learn more about them. Going by the first picture, it may be a type of spider. Though the center of the fences would suggest it may be a caterpillar's doing...we may never know :)

  2. Anonymous says:

    Little alien pods.

  3. Anonymous says:

    What's inside the structure in the middle. That's probably where the answer is.

  4. Anonymous says:

    It looks like something a spider might create.

  5. Anonymous says:

    wait and watch

  6. xmdp says:

    I'm surprised we haven't destroyed it.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Fukushima will kill it

  8. Anonymous says:

    Ask the indigenous communities, they'll know.

  9. Anonymous says:

    i would go with the spider possibility. what ever it is it must be something which we already know and understand, but we are disturbed and surprised by this unfamiliar form by which it is found recently. some kind of spider.

    vladimr budney

  10. Anonymous says:

    I think it may be a moth ..? the cocoon being attached to the stem in the middle and the fence around it to catch ants and other small insects..but it is damn wild looking .

  11. Similar, "amazing" structure", made by a fish, on the ocean bottom, pictured, recently, somewhere, online. Let's just DIG 'em!!

  12. Anonymous says:

    has any one considered a fruiting body of a yet undiscovered fungi

  13. Anonymous says:

    I can see the spider in the first picture

  14. Anonymous says:

    It is the fruiting body of a slime mold, a new species of slime mold, that is.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Count this be the ticket to saving the rain forest?

  16. DaveMan50 says:

    I say Symbiotic Fungus and spider might home.

  17. Anonymous says:

    It is a thing of beauty and I hope that through the discovery of what this is, we may learn more about ourselves. The unniverse holds many wonderful secrets....still.....

  18. Anonymous says:

    It is actually a bug radar antenna. an early warning system.

  19. Anonymous says:

    It's a satellite TV dish made by the bugs!

  20. Anonymous says:

    This is from a spider. I will call it an Alexander spider. The base of the pod in the middle is an egg sac that has a central column erected for adding stability, various climate functions and protection of the eggs. The fence around the middle tower is just that... a fence. It stops leafs, debris and crawling insects from getting to close. Once the eggs hatch they will use the tower to guage winds speed and direction. Then they too disperse...

  21. Anonymous says:

    The fence will catch food for the baby to eat when it is born

  22. Unknown says:

    Gnomes. they're obviously gnomish spoor.

  23. Anonymous says:

    Have these scientists asked the people of the Amazon what this is? They surely know it. Eberhard has not "discovered" anything, for christ sake. The question is just if the people who always has lived there wants to share the knowledge with white people, that´s all (if they are clever, they won´t).

  24. Anonymous says:

    Have these scientists asked the people of the Amazon what this is? They surely know it. Eberhard has not "discovered" anything, for christ sake. The question is just if the people who always has lived there wants to share the knowledge with white people or not, that´s all (if they are clever, they won´t).

  25. Anonymous says:

    PS: they surely are clever enough not to give away their knowledge to those ridiculous people

  26. Birger says:

    Intelligent NSA listening devices !

  27. Anonymous says:

    Really hope corporate greed stops destruction of the rainforest, we've been given all kinds of cures and remedies for what ails us, pity it's destroyed before we even know what is there ..that said, I think itcould be a number of things, maybe this and the fish markings are warnings that we've gone too far, and that's it

  28. Unknown says:

    My coworker at the Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard U. says: "Many years ago when we were co-workers at the MCZ, I came across a strange little structure that I finally discovered had been produced by a moth. It was a beautiful, teeny, delicate, lacelike structure about one cm., ovoid shaped, cage-like, white, grill-work structure that I recorded in my notes.

  29. Anonymous says:

    It appears to be imitating a splashing raindrop.

  30. Sharon Thomas says:

    put camera on it and wait to see what happens:

  31. Anonymous says:

    I think it is a insect perhaps in the center, like a cocoon and the fence is to keep insects that would eat it out while he is transforming. Just an Idea :)

  32. Anonymous says:


  33. Anonymous says:


  34. Anonymous says:

    Look up lacewing, this ISNT a mystery...not sure why "scientist" have no clue....i found in MYSELF RIGHT ON THE INTERNET.....duh

  35. Anonymous says:

    Your close, go look up lacewing...your on the right track :)

  36. Anonymous says:

    :)spiders are super intelligent animals, also praying mantis among other species of invertebrates
    .. the spiders have a wide spread of adaptability to almost all environments most of them tempered or hot weathers but as you see, they like our homes too... what it is from this that amazes to me is the shape it have that looks just like a drop of liquid splashing out frozen or just like when something breaking in trough, like the impact debris spreading out! :) so funny and nice to see!

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