Updated: Aug 25, 2019
Original wording by Victor Gibbs Re-written for publication by Dave Hodrien Release Date: 21/11/2009
Billy Meier is one of the most famous individuals who has claimed to have made contact with extraterrestrials. He lives in Switzerland, and claims his first ET contact occurred in 1942 when he was just 5 years old and lasted for a number of years. He claims his “official” contact with a group of humanoid extraterrestrials from the Pleiades star system began in 1975. These beings communicated with him both face-to-face and telepathically, and on numerous occasions allowed him to take photographs and video footage of their ships. Meier subsequently released this evidence to the public as proof of his contact experiences. These videos and photos have been studied in depth and are highly controversial. There are many believers and many sceptics alike.
In November 2009 Birmingham UFO Group was contacted by an elderly man named Victor Gibbs via E-Mail. Victor has done some optical research and believes he has discovered evidence that the Billy Meier UFO videos and photographs are hoaxed. Victor has been retired for some years now, but earlier in his life he worked in the gardening industry for 30 years. This included working in all aspects of the profession including maintenance, forestry, plantation, landscaping, farming and tree surgery. He believes that this qualifies him to give an expert opinion on the claims of Billy Meier that some of his photographic evidence shows large trees. Victor has looked at the Billy Meier photographs on the internet, and after his research and experience as a gardener, is in no doubt that Billy Meier used miniature trees in some of his photographs. Indeed the same miniature tree can be clearly observed in several of his UFO films and photographs reported to have been taken at different locations.
Here is one of Meier’s most controversial UFO video clips, known as the Wedding Cake Beam Ship footage because of the unusual shape of the craft:
Below are two stills from this video showing the craft and tree:
Here are some of Meier’s other photographs which appear to show either a very similar or perhaps even the same tree as in the video:
Below is a photograph of Victor standing next to a miniature tree which he believes is roughly the same size of the tree that Meier used several times in the video footage and a number of other photographs. He is actually confident that Meier’s tree was slightly smaller than this tree, and certainly no bigger than it.
Meier claimed that the Wedding Cake Beam Ship video and other photographic stills contained fully sized trees. Victor strongly disagrees with this statement and believes that the trees seen are miniature in size or even models. At the start of the video footage, the visible tree looks tiny, almost a dot on the landscape. Victor claims that a real fully sized tree would appear much bigger and taller, even at a distance. When Meier zooms right in on the tree, it is clear that it has a very thin and small trunk. There are no visible thick branches either. The look and feel of the alleged large tree is completely wrong, and looks a lot more like a small shrub with the characteristics of a Christmas tree, or a miniature model tree intended to fool the naked eye. Victor believes that Meier zoomed in on the tree from a distance to make it look like it was fully sized, but in actual fact in doing so he has revealed that the tree is quite small.
Note how the miniature tree looks to be the same size as Meier’s alleged tree. Both have the same characteristics and feel, and both appear to be a mere dot on the landscape. Victor then zooms in as far as the camera will allow (albeit he is only using a mobile phone camera for this footage, but it still proves the point). As you can see the size of the zoomed tree again is similar to that shown in the Meier video. Victor has showed this evidence to several well respected professional gardeners to get their opinion, and they all agreed that Meier’s tree must be miniature in size. One gardener who is also a keen photographer even thought that Meier’s tree was half the size of the miniature tree used in the experiment, and is actually a lot closer to the camera than it is set up to appear.
With regards to the extraterrestrial craft shown in Billy Meier’s videos and photographs, Victor believes they are fundamentally flawed. Victor spent many years in the Royal Air Force, both flying and observing aircraft. He is also an avid photographer. He feels that Meier’s craft are too crisp, clear and in focus to be distant aerial objects, and that they are actually miniatures suspended close to the camera lens. There is no visible atmospheric haze or pressure around the objects or ground reflected light. The alleged UFOs have are very dark on their underside which Victor believes is a tell tale sign that they are very small and close to the camera. In the close up photographs, there are no shadows of the objects visible on the ground. They are, in Victor’s opinion, easily replicated hoaxes.
Antony Wharton, one of Meier's biggest critics, has recreated some of the Meier photographs to show how easy it is to get very similar results. Below is one of Meier's photographs, reporting to show the "Wedding Cake" craft hovering over a van and in close proximity to the camera:
Below are two photographs showing Wharton's model craft and a hoax photo he took which looks very similar to Meier's shot. In the hoax photo, Wharton held the model at the left hand edge which is why it disappears off the side. He believes that in the above Meier photo, he was holding a model from the top and hanging it down in front of the camera view:
The below website link leads to a page where various Meier photographs have been deliberately recreated using nothing more than models and fishing line. This page does not prove that Meier faked his photographs, merely that it is possible to easily fake photographs of sufficient quality. This is why people should always be wary when examining photographic evidence on its own merits:
Here is another page which contains many clear images of hoaxed UFOs:
However, there are many people who believe that Billy Meier's claims are genuine, and have fully researched the various photographs and video footage released, and come up with evidence to suggest they are real. Below are two web pages where you can read a lot of arguments against the miniature tree and model UFO hypothesis.
Below is a link to a UFO Data forum post where various people have discussed Victor's work:
To sum up, after examining Billy Meier’s video and photographic evidence and his own research, Victor believes that either the craft being captured on film were tiny in size and piloted by beings only a few inches high, or they were simply created using models and miniature trees. In looking at both of these explanations it is obvious which is the more probable. As with many UFO cases there is evidence both for and against, it is up to you to look at both sides of the coin and make your own mind up as to what you really believe.
Copyright Dave Hodrien 2009