The Mystery of ‘Fairy Circles’ may soon be unveiled

Scientists may have found a solution to one of biology’s most intricate puzzles, the ‘fairy circles’ of Namibia.

'Fairy circles' are circular patches of barren land surrounded by grass, and were previously only encountered in the arid wastes of the Namib Desert in Namibia.

However, a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences journal by a team of scientists reveals that a similar phenomenon exists in the Australian outback, thousands of miles away from Southern Africa.

Furthermore, despite the difference in plant and animal species in the two regions, the circles in Australia have the exact same hexagonal distribution as the ones in Africa.

According to the scientists, fairy circles are a product of "a self-organization phenomenon driven by water–vegetation interactions", and their "birth and death processes correspond to spatially confined transitions between alternative stable states."