More mysterious craters found in Russia's remote Siberia region

In this photo taken Wednesday, July 16, 2014, the rim of a recently discovered crater in the Yamal Peninsula, in Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug, Russia. Russian scientists said Thursday that they believe a 60-meter wide crater, discovered recently in far northern Siberia, could be the result of changing temperatures in the region. Andrei Plekhanov, a senior researcher at the Scientific Research Center of the Arctic, traveled on Wednesday to the crater. Plekhanov said 80 percent of the crater appeared to be made up of ice and that there were no traces of an explosion, eliminating the possibility that a meteorite had struck the region. (AP Photo/Press Service of the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug Governor)

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Two more craters of unknown origin have been spotted in Russia's Siberia region, weeks after a similar-looking hole was found in the isolated northernmost area, a local paper reported.

The Siberian Times, an English-language newspaper, published pictures of two new giant holes discovered by reindeer herders, one located in the Yamal and the other in the Taymyr peninsula, both above the Arctic circle.

The paper said that theories of their origin range from meteorites or stray missiles to aliens or an underground gas explosion. The report could not be confirmed independently.

Russian state TV reported earlier this month that a giant hole had appeared in the gas-rich Yamal peninsula where temperatures plummet below -50 degrees Celsius (-58 degrees Fahrenheit) and the sun barely rises in winter.

A Russian scientific expedition arrived at the site to inspect the first crater, nicknamed the "Yamal black hole", earlier this month, according to a recent report by state-run website.

Yamal, inhabited by indigenous reindeer herders, is one of Russia's richest regions in natural gas.

A meteorite, which weighed about 10 metric tonnes, hit central Russia last year, injuring more than 1,000 people.

Experts drew comparisons with an incident in 1908, when a meteorite is thought to have devastated an area of more than 2,000 sq km (772 square miles) in Siberia, breaking windows as far as 200 kilometers (125 miles) from the point of impact.

(This version of the story corrects conversion in paragraph 8 of 2,000 sq km to 772 square miles (not 1,250 miles))

(Reporting By Alexei Anishchuk; Editing by Susan Fenton)