At the Dorset Echo, we are committed to bringing you the latest news and sport as it happens.

However, we couldn't go a whole year without a few bizarre events happening locally.

We've rounded up five of the stranger stories we've covered this year...

1. The one where a mysterious smelly item washed up on Weymouth Beach

Dorset Echo:

You may remember this from back in February - a mysterious item washed up on Weymouth Beach, bringing a terrible stench with it.

Residents first spotted a white mass floating in the water opposite Brunswick Terrace in the morning.

Residents speculated whether the item was a ‘fatberg’ due to its strong, unpleasant smell.

Read the full story, with video, here:

2. The one where an angry passenger threw dog poo on a car

Dorset Echo:

A frustrated passenger in a car which was pulled over by police proceeded to "decorate" it with dog poo and part of a bush after being told it would be seized.

The car was stopped along the road by the officer after it turned out to be uninsured. The driver also didn't hold a licence to drive the car. The passenger's bizarre actions after the car was pulled over were then revealed by police.

Read the full story here:

3. The one where a dove-shaped cloud appeared above Portland

Dorset Echo:

Picture: Gina Webb

A woman took a picture of a cloud which looked like a dove soaring above Chesil Beach on Portland.

Gina Webb, from Weymouth, was on the beach in May when she captured the magical moment.

In the picture the cloud looks like a bird raising its wings as if in flight.

4. The one where a giant sink hole opened up in west Dorset

Dorset Echo:

A giant sink hole - believed to be from the last ice age - opened up in Dorset in May.

Dorset Council said they took safety precautions after a small hole around the size of a dinner plate turned into "a chasm of unknown depth" on Bronkham Hill, west Dorset.

The transformation happened within the space of just a few months after it was first reported in February this year.

Read the full story here:

5. The one with the terrifying cloud of flying ants - which could be seen from space

Dorset Echo:

A cloud of flying ants that hit the south coast in July was so dense it could be seen in satellite images from space.

The swarm of insects hit Hampshire, West Sussex and Dorset and were captured on the Met Office's radar.

They were also spotted in East Sussex and Kent.

The weather was perfect for ants to move into the "nuptial flight" phase of their reproduction, also known as "flying ant day."

Read the full story here: