Written by Keith Rowell
Last Updated: 14 February 2014

How many genuine UFOs are seen in Oregon every year?

This is a very difficult question to answer definitively. Here are some elements to consider quite apart from the definition of "UFO." The definition of "UFO" is the easy part as you'll see later.

Now that you know some of the real problems investigators and ufologists face just trying to get a handle on this very basic question about UFOs, we will take a crack at answering it: How many genuine UFOs are seen in Oregon every year?

Since we are affiliated with MUFON, Inc., we went directly to the MUFON Case Management System (CMS). You in the public use the "front end" of this system to report sightings to MUFON at We local MUFON investigators use the "back end" of CMS to report our findings about the cases you report and make our best determination of what the stimulus was for what you saw. The MUFON CMS gives three basic categories for the stimulus of a UFO sighting: 

The UFO Activity in Oregon

As of August 2008, the MUFON CMS gave us a total of 273 cases reported for Oregon, mostly describing cases taking place since about 1999. Here's how they breakdown. 

Thus, so far, we have 55 genuine UFOs (Unknowns) over about seven years, but we have the 96 uninvestigated (Assigned) cases outstanding. To count the uninvestigated cases and add them to the investigated cases, let's assume the same percentage of Unknowns (55) to Hoaxes (17) plus IFOs (19) plus Insufficent Data (34) as in the investigated cases. This is about 44% Unknowns (UFOs). Thus, 44% of 96 (the Assigned cases), which is about 42 Unknowns, will likely come out of the Assigned cases once they are investigated. So, over seven years we have 42 probable Unknowns plus 55 Unknowns, which is 79 divided by 7 years. This equals about 14 Unknowns (genuine UFOs) a year for Oregon in recent times.

However, as indicated above, anyone in the UFO investigation business—like Oregon MUFON—knows that far more UFOs are seen than are reported. It is very difficult to get a handle on this number. You could easily double 14 and not be wrong. You might even say there are ten sightings for every one that gets reported to any UFO investigative organization, and you still might not be too far off. There are probably easily 100 genuine UFO sightings per year in Oregon.

But, of course, these figures are quite uncertain and will remain that way until academia gets serious about UFOs and does the long-term study that they should. The key to lighting a fire under academia is the U.S. Congress. If enough of us call our U.S. representatives and make a big enough ruckus, then eventually Congress will make federal dollars available to academia so that it will be OK for the academics to study UFOs without fear of ridicule. (We need to understand that academics are abject cowards when it comes to studying the entire field of the paranormal, of which UFOs are a part. Dangle "safe" federal dollars in front of them, however, and, guaranteed, they'll take the bait.)