The internet can’t agree whether this is a raven or a rabbit

Story by CBC Kids News • 2019-08-22 09:59

What do you see?

In 2015, there was The Dress.

BuzzFeed shared a picture of a dress that created a bit of an optical illusion. Basically, some people thought it was black and blue, while others saw white and gold.

The original BuzzFeed blog post about the viral photo of The Dress

A screenshot of the original article from BuzzFeed that got people talking about The Dress. (BuzzFeed)

A fierce debate took place as the photo went viral, and not everyone could agree on what colour this dress actually is.

But it isn’t the only puzzler to ever have been on the internet — not by a longshot.

You might remember the great Yanny/Laurel debate of 2018. It was an audio clip that surfaced on Twitter that asked: Do you hear the name Yanny or Laurel?

A tweet about the viral audio clip that could be heard as saying yanny or laurel depending who you ask

Again, there was never a clear answer.

Some heard “Yanny” while others heard “Laurel.”

And like The Dress before it, people joined teams using hashtags like #teamyanny or #teamlaurel.

In 2019, there’s a new puzzler: The rabbit/bird.

A viral video of a man petting something but the internet can't decide if it's a bird or a rabbit

Is it a rabbit or a bird? That's what people want to figure out from this video. (Dan Quintana/Twitter)

A man named Dan Quintana posted a video on his Twitter account with the caption: “rabbits love getting stroked on their nose.”

Dan Quintana tweets a video claiming he's stroking a rabbit but many say it's a bird

And from that caption you’d probably think something like, “Oh, weird rabbit — looks like a bird.”

Or you might be like some people on Twitter, who are not buying it. They are on team bird.

One tweet claims it's a bird, kicking off a series of team bird tweets

However, there are many on team rabbit, too.

Another tweet loved this rabbit content and wanted more

Others are on the fence. They’re skeptical, yet curious.

One tweeter isn't really sure what to do about the so-called ears on this rabbit

Then there are those whose brains have turned to mush thanks to this puzzle.

This optical illusion hurt this tweeter's brain

There’s definitely a debate going on.

A doctor posted a tweet that reads very sharp rabbit but someone contests it by writing that's a crow

For some, it’s definitely rabbit — and there’s no changing their minds.

Two twitter users are in agreement that it's definitely a rabbit

Some people are just reminded of 2015 and 2018.

A few Twitter users start talking about The Dress and Yanny and Laurel debates of the past

But what’s the answer?

The truth comes from the original poster himself who, it turns out, is a very smart scientist:

“As you can see the translucent nictitating membrane sweep across the eye horizontally (rabbits don’t have membranes like this) and the positioning of the ‘ears’ are a little strange,” he told CNet.

“I made the rabbit comment to prime readers into thinking it was actually a rabbit, to give it a fighting chance at least. When you only see the beak in your peripheral vision, it really seems like they’re ears. Without this misleading cue, I thought most people would have seen a bird.”

To put it simply: it’s a bird, and according to the scientist, you can tell because the bird has a feature on its eye which rabbits just don’t have.

Another mystery solved. Until the next one.

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