History abounds with tales of small animals falling from the sky during rainstorms.
A Greek author wrote of raining fish in the second century A.D. Fish falling from the sky have been reported throughout the centuries in India, Scotland, England, and the United States.
Herring, catfish, perch, trout, bass, and shad have all been reported as raining from the sky. Tadpoles frequently appear in the fish rain reports, and frogs are not uncommon.
The phenomenon has been so widespread that many scientists have struggled to come up with a good theory to cover it. For a time, people believed a huge floating ocean existed in the atmosphere. Sometimes it leaked. Others never believed in the truth of the stories to begin with.
In 1921, a scientist by the name of E. W. Gudger published a collection of these stories in a nature magazine along with possible explanations for the phenomenon. Gudger came up with a plausible theory: Whirlwinds and waterspouts can suck incredible amounts of water and the contents of whole ponds into the air.
If the whirlwinds travel some distance before calming down, the fish would be carried by the more than 100-mile (160-kilometer)-an-hour winds until the force of the winds abated and gravity made the fish fall from the sky.