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VALLEY COUNTY -- Scientists say Thursday's mystery earthquake that shook homes, woke up residents, and scared pets is likely a mystery no more.

The U.S. Geological Survey tracked the small earthquake on Thursday evening, and released an event report around 8 p.m.

The report shows the quake registered a 2.9 on the Richter Magnitude Scale, with the source located about 8.7 miles beneath the Earth's surface. The epicenter is listed as just a few miles south of the unincorporated community of Lake Fork, Idaho, near Douglas Rd. and Fairbrother Ln.

Several residents called and emailed KTVB in the wake of Thursday's shaky event. These witnesses said the earthquake created a small tremor that could be felt throughout the central and southern part of the valley.

According to the Richter scale, earthquakes smaller than 2.0 are classified as micro-quakes, while those larger than 4.5 are usually strong enough to register on seismographs worldwide.

Most sources agree that a reading of 2.9 on the Richter scale can be felt be people, but generally causes no damage.

Here in Idaho, the USGS network of seismometers did not immediately record Thursday's earthquake. However, smaller seismometers in the area -- including a unit maintained by Boise State University at Barbara Morgan Elementary in McCall -- did record the shaking.

Jim Foudy is the Principal of Barbara Morgan Elementary. Foudy contacted KTVB and shared his school's digital seismograph of the event which can be seen below.



We actually had several families that heard the sound and felt the activity, Foudy reported.

Foudy added that his school's seismometer usually picks up data from as far away as Alaska, along with islands in the central Pacific Ocean, so he wasn't surprised that it registered the small, nearby quake.

It actually woke a lot of people up, Foudy said.

Meanwhile, Boise State professor and earthquake expert Kasper Vanwijk took time to write KTVB a short, but detailed, email that included his reaction to the former mystery quake.

According to Vanwijk, the McCall area has a long history of shallow and relatively small earthquakes.

Vanwijk went on to say that fact makes the region's seismic activity so interesting to watch.

Vanwijk also included this interesting link to an historic map of the major seismic activity recorded in Valley County.

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