L LAC WOOD SCREECHER An elusive yet loud creature that roams somewhere in Lac Wood, Quebec, Canada. Not much is known about the screecher other than its truly frightening, almost metallic screech. Those who have heard it say it is absolutely bone chilling. Being in close proximity of the creature itself can cause a painful throbbing sensation in the head, nose bleeds, nausea, and vomiting. The creature also leaves behind hair and dandruff that, if comes in contact with exposed skin, can cause irritation, rash, blistering and even peeling. In extreme cases can cause large amounts of skin to peel causing profuse bleeding and scarring. The creature is yet to be captured on film and there has been no known recent encounters. LAGARFLJOT WORM The Lagarfljótsormur or Lagarfljót worm is an Icelandic lake monster purported to live in Lagarfljót, a lake by the town of Egilsstaðir. Sightings have been logged since 1345 and continue into the 21st century, including a 2012 video supposedly showing the creature swimming. An origin of the creature is given in Jón Árnason's collection of Icelandic folktales and legends published in 1862. The serpentine creature is said to live in Lagarfljót, a freshwater, below-sea-level, glacial-fed lake which has very poor visibility as a result of siltation. It is described as longer than a bus, or 40 feet, and has also been reported outside the water, lying coiled up or slithering into the trees. It is a "many humps" type of lake monster, rather than the simply serpentine type of, for example, the Loch Ness Monster. The Lagarfljót Worm has been sighted several times in modern times, including in 1963 by the head of the Icelandic National Forest Service, Sigurður Blöndal, and in 1998 by a teacher and students at Hallormsstaðir School. In 1983, contractors laying a telephone cable measured a large shifting mass near the eastern shore when performing preliminary depth measurements, and when they later retrieved the non-functional cable, found that it was broken where it had lain over the anomaly. In February 2012, the Icelandic national broadcaster, RÚV, published a video thought to show the Lagarfljót Worm swimming in snow-covered icy water. But according to a frame-by-frame analysis of the footage by Finland-based researcher Miisa McKeown, the filmed object actually made no progress through the water, although optical illusion made it appear to propel forward. The phenomenon could be explained by a flimsy inanimate object (such as a frozen fish net) being moved by rapid current. Despite this, in 2012, an Icelandic panel voted by a 7-to-6 margin to authenticate the video as genuine, awarding money to the filmmaker. This received criticism as an attempt to attract visitors of cryptotourism. In August 2014, an Icelandic truth commission reported that members were divided about the video but saw no reason to doubt the existence of the creature. Various other rational explanations have also been advanced. Gas rise from the lake bed here, even creating openings in the ice; such bubbles of methane, which can be quite large, could be the identity of reported sightings of the worm. Or, these gas can also lift debris from the lake bottom to the surface, or the bubbles could refract the light differently than in surrounding air and create optical illusions. Flotsam from the mountain sides and forests also collects in tangles that can look like some sort of monster. According to Helgi Hallgrímsson, an Icelandic biologist who has extensively studied the lake, both of these could explain some but not all of the sightings, while traditional legendary material could explain some of the stories. LAKE TIANCHI MONSTER Lake Tianchi Monster is the name given to what is said to be a lake monster that lives in Heaven Lake (known as Cheonji in Korean) located in the peak of Baekdu Mountain within the Baekdudaegan and Changbai mountain ranges encompassing Jilin Province of China and Ryanggang Province of North Korea. According to Beijing Youth Daily, an estimated 20 monsters were reported, however "scientists are skeptical that any large creature would be able to survive in the lake given its recent history of volcanic activity", and skeptics say "it's all in the imagination, or just a floating volcanic rock". The first reported sighting was in 1903. It was claimed that a large buffalo-like creature attacked three people, but was shot six times. The monster then retreated under the water. In 21 to 23 August 1962, a person using a telescope reportedly saw two of the monsters chasing each other in water. More than a hundred people reported the sightings. More recent reports describe the monster as having a human-like head attached to a 1.5 m neck. It is said to have a white ring around the bottom of its neck, and the rest of its skin is gray and smooth. In 2007, Zhuo Yongsheng, a Chinese TV reporter said he had shot a 20-minute video of six unidentified creatures in the volcanic lake on 6 September. He later sent still photos to Xinhua's Jilin provincial bureau. According to a news report one of these showed the six "Nessies" swimming in parallel in three pairs. Another one of them featured the animals closer together, leaving circular ripples on the lake surface. Zhuo said he had seen the six seal-like, finned creatures swimming and frolicking in the lake for an hour and a half, before they disappeared around 7:00 a.m. "They could swim as fast as yachts and at times they would all disappear in the water. It was impressive to see them all acting at exactly the same pace, as if someone was giving orders," he said. "Their fins—or maybe wings—were longer than their bodies." LAKE VAN MONSTER The Armenian chroniclers Movses Khorenatsi and Anania Shirakatsi wrote about vishaps living in Lake Van. According to the legend, the god Vahagn, the vishapakagh ("reaper of vishaps"), would plunge into Lake Van to drag out any vishap that had grown large enough to devour the world. Scholar James Russell considers that this legend is an Armenian adoption of Urartian myths concerning the combat of the god Teisheba with the water monster Ullikummi. Russell writes that into the modern period, the Armenians of the Van basin would refer to the sudden storms that arise on the lake as vishap kami (wind). A story in the Ottoman newspaper Saadet of April 29, 1889, recounted that a creature had dragged a man into lake Van. Following reports of the incident, the Ottoman government sent an official scientific survey group to the lake who failed to spot the creature. Russell discounts a connection between their belief about lake vishaps and the 1990s sightings of a lake creature, considering that any folk beliefs amongst the Kurdish population are likely to be affected more by stories about lake monsters in popular Western culture than any surviving Armenian traditions. He also recounts that Kurds he met in Van in 1994 and 1997 considered the lake monster story to be a "commercial ploy and a farce". In 1997 a local man called Ünal Kozak claimed to have captured the monster on video which was sent for analysis. Academic Mustafa Y. Nutku has written a book about the creature, together with Kozak. Kozak's video is under constant criticism, with questions like why it never pans left, possibly because of a boat that may have carried the creature. Or why the monster only goes straight, instead of curving through the water. Even criticism as to why the breathing is not in and out, but a continuous release, much like the effects of an air hose. A 12-foot high statue based on reported sightings has been erected to its honor in Van, Turkey. Skeptics point out that the region would benefit from tourist revenue and a hoax might attract visitors. LAKE WORTH MONSTER Numerous sightings in July 1969 led to the belief of a half-man, half-goat creature living in Lake Worth in Texas. Terry Deckard, a reporter, wrote an article about it in the newspaper, which made the front page. The headline read: "Fishy Man-Goat Terrifies Couples Parked at Lake Worth." The couples that reported the sightings described it as a half-man, half-goat, with fur and scales. A man named Tommy Burson soon after reported the creature landed on his car after jumping out of a tree. An 18-inch scar on the side of his car was shown by Burson as proof. The police at this point decided to investigate. Up until then, they had laughed at any reports they received, thinking it was a hoax. The following night, reports came in of the creature hurling a tire from a bluff at overlooking bystanders, which was reportedly witnessed by up to 10 individuals. The most well-known photograph (and perhaps the only one) of the creature belongs to a woman named Debrah Grabee, who received the photo from Allen Plaster, who took the picture in October 1969 near Lake Worth during the tire throwing incident. In November 1999, television station KDFW aired a lengthy report about the Lake Worth Monster. Reporter Richard Ray interviewed locals including reporter Jim Marrs and purported eye witness Sallie Ann Clarke. Clarke's testimony was compelling but the report also stated that some high school students had admitted to authorities that they had pulled a prank on locals by wearing a gorilla costume and parading around the lake. LARIOSAURO Lariosauro is a cryptid reported to live in Lake Como in Italy, about 30 miles north of Milan. Como is one of the deepest European lakes, at about 1200 feet at the deepest location. In 1946, eyewitnesses allegedly reported seeing a reptile-like animal swimming in the waters of the lake. It was called Lariosauro, the same name used a century before to name a prehistoric reptile whose fossilized remains were found by the lake. A weekly of Como, a week after the first article, wrote it was a sturgeon, but the sturgeon as well as the monster appear to be more simply a hoax invented by the press. There were other sightings, or alleged sightings, in Lake Como. In 1954 in Argegno a creature with round muzzle and back and webbed paws. In August 1957 an enormous monster in the waters between Dongo and Musso. In September 1957 a strange animal whose head was described as similar to a crocodile head. In 2003 a giant eel, 10–12 m long, in Lecco. Skeptic researcher Giorgio Castiglioni, who studied these cases, thinks that the animal of 1954 was an otter, the monster of August 1957 a hoax, the beast of September 1957 possibly a pike and the 2003 eel actually a group of fish swimming together. LIZARD MAN OF LEE COUNTY In the folklore of Lee County, South Carolina, the Lizard Man of Scape Ore Swamp (also known as the Lizard Man of Lee County) is an entity said to inhabit the swampland of the region. First mentioned in the late 1980s by a local 17-year-old, the purported sighting yielded a significant amount of newspaper, radio and television publicity. According to Lee County authorities, another local man admitted fabricating a story about encountering and shooting the creature "because he wanted to keep the legend of the Lizard Man alive". In 1988, 17-year-old local Christopher Davis claimed his car was damaged by a creature he described as "green, wet-like, about 7 feet tall and had three fingers, red eyes, skin like a lizard, snakelike scales". Coverage by newspapers and media resulted in increased attention for his claims. According to Davis, he was driving home from working the night shift at a fast food restaurant when his car got a flat tire. After fixing it, he saw the creature walking toward him. Davis got in his car and began to drive, but the creature was soon on top of the car. He applied his brakes, causing the creature to roll off the car, giving Davis enough time to escape. Local businesses began selling "Lizard Man" T-shirts, and the local chamber of commerce encouraged the media attention as "good for the community". The increase in newspaper and media publicity prompted further reports of sightings, and the area soon became a tourist attraction for visitors and hunters. Local radio station WCOS offered a $1 million reward to anybody who could capture the creature alive. On August 5, Kenneth Orr, an airman stationed at Shaw Air Force Base, filed a police report alleging that he had encountered the Lizard Man on highway 15, and he had shot and wounded it. He presented several scales and a small quantity of blood as evidence. Orr recanted this account two days later when he was arraigned for unlawfully carrying a pistol and the misdemeanor offense of filing a false police report. According to Orr, he had hoaxed the sighting in order to keep stories about the Lizard Man in circulation. Reports of the creature gradually declined at the end of the summer. Local law enforcement officials speculated that the sightings were likely to have been caused by a bear. In 2008, CNN mentioned the Lizard Man legend in a story about a couple in Bishopville, South Carolina who reported damage to their vehicle, including blood traces. The blood traces were subsequently found to be from a domestic dog, most likely a coyote or wolf. In 2010, the TV program Destination Truth featured the legendary creature. In 2015, local television station WCIV featured photos and videos claimed to be Lizard Man, allegedly taken by unidentified individuals. LOCH NESS MONSTER In Scottish folklore, the Loch Ness Monster or Nessie is a creature said to inhabit Loch Ness in the Scottish Highlands. It is often described as large in size with a long neck and one or more humps protruding from the water. Popular interest and belief in the creature has varied since it was brought to worldwide attention in 1933. Evidence of its existence is anecdotal, with a few disputed photographs and sonar readings. The scientific community regards the Loch Ness Monster as a phenomenon without biological basis, explaining sightings as hoaxes, wishful thinking, and the misidentification of mundane objects. The word "monster" was reportedly applied for the first time to the creature on 2 May 1933 by Alex Campbell, water bailiff for Loch Ness and a part-time journalist, in an Inverness Courier report. On 4 August 1933 the Courier published a report by Londoner George Spicer that several weeks earlier, while they were driving around the loch, he and his wife saw "the nearest approach to a dragon or pre-historic animal that I have ever seen in my life" trundling across the road toward the loch with "an animal" in its mouth. Letters began appearing in the Courier, often anonymously, claiming land or water sightings by the writer, their family or acquaintances or remembered stories. The accounts reached the media, which described a "monster fish", "sea serpent", or "dragon" and eventually settled on "Loch Ness monster". On 6 December 1933 the first purported photograph of the monster, taken by Hugh Gray, was published in the Daily Express; the Secretary of State for Scotland soon ordered police to prevent any attacks on it. In 1934, interest was further piqued by the "surgeon's photograph". That year, R. T. Gould published an account of the author's investigation and a record of reports predating 1933. Other authors have claimed sightings of the monster dating to the sixth century AD. In the “surgeon’s photograph” the creature was reportedly a toy submarine built by Christian Spurling, the son-in-law of Marmaduke Wetherell. Wetherell had been publicly ridiculed by his employer, the Daily Mail, after he found "Nessie footprints" which turned out to be a hoax. To get revenge on the Mail, Wetherell perpetrated his hoax with co-conspirators Spurling (sculpture specialist), Ian Wetherell (his son, who bought the material for the fake), and Maurice Chambers (an insurance agent). The toy submarine was bought from F. W. Woolworths, and its head and neck were made from wood putty. After testing it in a local pond the group went to Loch Ness, where Ian Wetherell took the photos near the Altsaigh Tea House. When they heard a water bailiff approaching, Duke Wetherell sank the model with his foot and it is "presumably still somewhere in Loch Ness". Chambers gave the photographic plates to Wilson, a friend of his who enjoyed "a good practical joke". Wilson brought the plates to Ogston's, an Inverness chemist, and gave them to George Morrison for development. He sold the first photo to the Daily Mail, who then announced that the monster had been photographed. Aeronautical engineer Tim Dinsdale filmed a hump which left a wake crossing Loch Ness in 1960. A person who enhanced the film noticed a shadow in the negative which was not obvious in the developed film. By enhancing and overlaying frames, he found what appeared to be the rear body of a creature underwater: "Before I saw the film, I thought the Loch Ness Monster was a load of rubbish. Having done the enhancement, I'm not so sure". In 1972, a group of researchers from the Academy of Applied Science led by Robert H. Rines conducted a search for the monster involving sonar examination of the loch depths for unusual activity. Concurrent with the sonar readings, a floodlit camera obtained a pair of underwater photographs. Both depicted what appeared to be a rhomboid flipper, although skeptics have dismissed the images as the bottom of the loch, air bubbles, a rock, or a fish fin. The apparent flipper was photographed in different positions, indicating movement. The first flipper photo is better-known than the second, and both were enhanced and retouched from the original negatives. According to team member Charles Wyckoff, the photos were retouched to superimpose the flipper; the original enhancement showed a considerably less-distinct object. No one is sure how the originals were altered. A number of explanations have been suggested to account for sightings of the creature. According to Ronald Binns, a former member of the Loch Ness Phenomena Investigation Bureau, there is probably no single explanation of the monster. Binns wrote two sceptical books, the 1983 The Loch Ness Mystery Solved, and his 2017 The Loch Ness Mystery Reloaded. In these he contends that an aspect of human psychology is the ability of the eye to see what it wants, and expects, to see. They may be categorized as misidentifications of known animals, misidentifications of inanimate objects or effects, reinterpretations of Scottish folklore, hoaxes, and exotic species of large animals. A reviewer wrote that Binns had "evolved into the author of ... the definitive, skeptical book on the subject". Binns does not call the sightings a hoax, but "a myth in the true sense of the term" and states that the "'monster is a sociological ... phenomenon. ...After 1983 the search ... (for the) possibility that there just might be continues to enthrall a small number for whom eye-witness evidence outweighs all other considerations". LONE PINE MOUNTAIN DEVIL The Lone Pine Mountain Devil is a winged carnivore of North American folklore. Some believe it to be a West Coast relative of the New Jersey Devil. One early account by a priest described them as “winged demons” sent from the “depths of hell.” Also referred to as the California Mountain Devil, the animal is said to be a bat-like legendary creature or cryptid believed to inhabit the wilderness and mountainous regions of the American Southwest and Northern Mexico. The Lone Pine Mountain Devil is usually described as a large, furry, multi-winged creature with razor-like talons and multiple layers of deadly, venomous fangs. The scientific community considers the Lone Pine Mountain Devil to be a combination of folklore and misidentification rather than a real creature. Since 1928, there have not been any significant or credible sightings of the Lone Pine Mountain Devil and there are no existing images of the creature caught on film. Its name may come from a combination of one if its alleged habitats in the Sierra Nevada mountain range outside the town of Lone Pine, California, and the brutal viciousness of its attack. The creature is believed to slaughter its prey by attacking the torso and head of the victim. Most wild animal attacks stem from the need to eat the meat of its prey, whereas the Mountain Devils are said to indulge only on the soft cartilage areas of the face and torso, while leaving the remaining meat to rot or for other animals to eat. Early settlers, including the Forty-niners, began spreading tales of the creature’s existence after numerous coyote and bobcat carcasses were found in the rough desert and mountain wilderness of the Southwest in the mid 19th Century. It is not known when or who first coined the name “Lone Pine Mountain Devil.” The Mountain Devil became legend as the settler’s told each other tales of finding entire convoys of adventurers, families, and gold prospectors who had been murdered, their faces left unrecognizable and their torsos appeared to have been eaten clean to the bone. Since the early-1900s, sightings have dropped significantly. Some attribute the massive population influx of the early 20th Century to the regions of Southern California (Los Angeles and San Diego areas) as to the disappearance of this alleged beast. After years of decline, the new millennium has seen a sudden jump in Mountain Devil sightings. California cryptologists have stated that they have recorded an exponential rise between 2003 and 2010. Local authorities are currently investigating the disappearance of a group of local high school students missing in the Death Valley region since March, 2010. LOVELAND FROG The creature was allegedly first sighted in 1955, with some versions of the story specifying the month of May. There are three different versions of that story that only differ slightly from each other. The three stories start the same way, with a businessman or a traveling salesman driving along an unnamed road late at night. The stories start to diverge at this point: in one story, the driver was heading out of the Branch Hill neighborhood when he spotted three figures stood erect on their hind legs along the side of the road, each 3 to 4 feet in height, with leathery skin and frog faces. In the other two versions of the story, the creatures were spotted under or over a poorly lit bridge (there are a number of bridges in Loveland going over the Little Miami river). The story tells of the businessman watching the figures converse for a while until one of the creatures held a wand over its head and fired a spray of sparks, startling the observer into fleeing the scene. The next widely recognized sighting was reported on March 3, 1972 at 1:00 am. A police officer named Ray Shockey, a local officer who was born in Loveland and spent 40 years on the force starting in 1971, claimed to have been traveling along the Riverside Drive heading into Loveland, driving carefully because of icy conditions, when a creature scurried across the road in front of his vehicle. The creature was fully illuminated in his vehicle's headlights and he described 3 to 4 feet tall and about 50 to 75 pounds, with leathery skin. He described the creature as being crouched like a frog, before standing erect to stare directly at him before climbing over the guardrail back down towards the river. In an investigation by Shockey's fellow officers, scratch marks or abrasions on the guardrail where the incident had been reported were found. However, there is no photographic evidence to support those claims. Two weeks after that incident, a police officer named Mark Matthews had another encounter with the creature. He reported seeing something crouched along the ice while driving and thought it was an injured or dead animal. He intended to remove it from the road but claims the creature stood erect on its hind legs. Matthews recounted shooting at the creature which then hobbled over the guardrail and into the river. Matthews gave a similar physical description of the creature as Shockey had, except for the addition of a tail. Matthews later changed his story, claiming that he had only seen a large lizard, possibly an escaped pet iguana. He tried to capture it so he could support officer Shockey's story, which was not taken very seriously by others in the department. In a supposed email interview in 2001, he is often quoted as writing that the incident was "habitually blown out of proportion." And that: “It was and is no 'monster'. It was not leathery or had wet matted fur. It was not 3-5 feet tall. It did not stand erect. The animal I saw was obviously some type of lizard that someone had as a pet that either got too large for its aquarium, escaped by accident or they simply got tired of it. It was less than 3 feet in length, ran across the road and was probably blinded by my headlights. It presented no aggressive action.” On the night of 3 August 2016, two teenagers playing Pokemon Go between Loveland Madeira Road and Lake Isabella reported seeing a giant frog near the lake which "stood up and walked on its hind legs". LUSCA Many reports of the creature are from the blue holes, off Andros, an island in the Bahamas. The St. Augustine Monster (an example of a globster), which washed up in 1896 on the Florida coast, is considered one of the better candidates for a possible lusca specimen. Recent evidence suggests the St. Augustine Monster, like many globsters, was simply a large mass of decomposing adipose tissue from Sperm Whale. Scientists dismiss the lusca as at most a large example of the giant squid. On January 18, 2011, the body of what appeared to witnesses to be a giant octopus washed ashore on Grand Bahama Island in the Bahamas. According to eyewitness reports, the remains seemed to represent only a portion of the head and mouthparts of the original creature. Based on their knowledge of octopus morphology, local fishermen estimated the total size of the creature when living to be some 20 to 30 feet. The lusca is said to grow over 75 ft long, or even 200 ft long, however there are no proven cases of other octopus species growing up to even half these lengths. To attack properly on the surface, the octopus would have to have one tentacle on the sea floor to balance itself; this would mean that such accounts, if real, would have to take place in relatively shallow water. Other descriptions also mention that it can change color, a characteristic commonly found in smaller octopuses. The supposed habitat is rugged underwater terrain, large undersea caves, the edge of the continental shelf, or other areas where large crustaceans are found, which is supposedly what they feed on. Although the general identification of the Lusca is with the colossal octopus, it has also been described as either a multi-headed monster, a dragon-like creature, or some kind of evil spirit. The reports of the Lusca Monster attacking swimmers and divers was investigated by Jeremy Wade, the host of the television series River Monsters, in the episode "Terror in Paradise". After investigating reef sharks, tiger sharks, and some fish species Jeremy settled on a large octopus being the most likely culprit for being the Lusca Monster. m MACFARLANE’S BEAR MacFarlane's bear is a proposed extinct species of bear that was found in Canada's Northwest Territories. In 1864, Inuit hunters shot and killed an enormous yellow-furred bear and gave the skin and skull to the Fort Anderson post manager and amateur naturalist Roderick MacFarlane (sometimes given as Robert MacFarlane) of the Hudson's Bay Company. MacFarlane shipped the skin and skull to the Smithsonian Institution where they were placed in storage and soon forgotten. Eventually, Dr. Clinton Hart Merriam uncovered the remains, which he thought had been shot very far outside the brown bear's normal range, and concluded that it wasn't a brown bear at all. In 1918, he described the specimen as a new species and genus, Vetularctos inopinatus, calling it the "ancient unexpected bear." With the exception of unconfirmed sightings, MacFarlane's bear is sometimes thought to have become extinct since the specimen was obtained in 1864. There have been many theories concerning the origin of MacFarlane's bear, which include suggestions that it may have been a grizzly–polar bear hybrid, or even a surviving representative of a Pleistocene species. The recent discovery of demonstrable grizzly-polar bear hybrids that match the specimen's description very well, notably the pale tan fur and oddly shaped skull that led Merriam to propose his new genus, places the validity of the proposed species and its associated scientific names into question. In episode #215 of the History Channel program Monster Quest, "Giant Bear Attack", paleontologist Dr. Blaine W. Schubert (of East Tennessee State University) was allowed to examine the skull (although the Institute did not allow the examination to be filmed). Schubert stated that he was "100% sure" that it was the skull of a young, female brown bear and "actually, not a particularly large individual." In a 1984 publication intended to correct Merriam's 1929 taxonomy proposing 96 distinct species names for varieties of brown bear, E. Raymond Hall synonymized all 96 of Merriam's names with merely nine subspecies of U. arctos. Hall synonymized Velarctos inopinatus with U. arctos horribilis, the normal grizzly bear. MAHAMBA Mahamba is a cryptid rumored to lurk in the Democratic Republic of the Congo's Lake Likouala around the swamp region. It is purported to be an enormous crocodile, reaching lengths of up to 50 feet. Some have speculated that it is a freshwater relic of the Mosasaurs — huge, sea-dwelling lizards which were presumed extinct by the end of the Cretaceous period. The Bobangi aboriginals have proclaimed this animal to be unlike any other they have seen, and have only compared it to other creatures, such as a Nkoli (the Bobangi word for crocodile) or the legendary Nguma-monene for the sake of comparison. It is also been reported to attack and devour rafts and canoes. Some theorize it could be a singular Deinosuchus that had not become extinct like the rest of its species. MALTESE TIGER The Maltese tiger, or blue tiger, is a reported but unproven coloration morph of a tiger, reported mostly in the Fujian Province of China. It is said to have bluish fur with dark gray stripes. Most of the Maltese tigers reported have been of the South Chinese subspecies. The South Chinese tiger today is critically endangered, due to their illegal and continued use in traditional Chinese medicine and the "blue" alleles may be wholly extinct. Blue tigers have also been reported in Korea. The term "Maltese" comes from domestic cat terminology for blue fur, and refers to the slate gray coloration. Many cats with such coloration are present in Malta, which may have given rise to the use of the adjective in this context. Around 1910, Harry Caldwell, an American missionary and big game hunter, claimed to have spotted and hunted a blue tiger outside Fuzhou. His search is chronicled in his book Blue Tiger (1924), and by his hunting companion Roy Chapman Andrews in his Camps & Trails in China (1925, chapter VII). A more recent report, given to Mystery Cats of the World author Karl Shuker, comes from the son of a US Army soldier who served in Korea during the Korean War. The man claimed that his father sighted a blue tiger in the mountains near what is now the Demilitarized Zone. Blue tigers have also been reported from Burma. The black tiger was also long considered mythical, but several pelts have proven that pseudo-melanistic or hypermelanic tigers do exist. They are not completely black, but have dense, wide stripes that partially obscure the orange background color. In support of the blue tiger theory, Maltese-colored cats certainly do exist. The most common are a domestic cat breed, the Russian Blue, and a variety of the British Shorthair, the British Blue, but blue bobcats and lynxes have also been recorded, and there are genetic mutations and combinations that result in bluish hue, or at least in the impression of a blue-gray animal. MAMLAMBO The myth of the Mamlambo became of interest to cryptozoologists in 1997, when South African newspapers (including Johannesburg's The Star and Cape Town's Cape Argus) reported on sightings of a "giant reptile" monster in the Mzintlava River near Mount Ayliff in South Africa. Villagers in the area claimed that the creature was 67 feet long, had the head of a horse, the lower body of a fish, short legs, and the neck of a snake, and that it shined with a green light at night. During the period between January and April 1997, as many as nine deaths had been attributed to the Mamlambo. According to police, the victims had been in the water a while and had the soft parts of their heads and neck eaten by crabs; local villagers, on the other hand, claimed that these mutilations had been caused by the Mamlambo's habit of eating faces and brains. For this reason, the Mamlambo is often referred to as "the Brain Sucker". An expedition in search of the mamlambo was done on the SyFy Show Destination Truth; the mission found no evidence of the creature's existence. MANDE BARUNG The Mande Burung is an alleged ape-like creature said to inhabit the Meghalaya subtropical forests in the remote Garo Hills of the north east of India and in Bangladesh. Generally described as a large, hairy bipedal hominoid, some believe that this animal, or its relatives, may be found around the world under different regional names, such as the Yeti of Tibet and Nepal, the Ban-manush in Bangladesh, the Yeren of mainland China, and the Bigfoot of the Pacific northwest region of the United States and the Canadian province of British Columbia. MANIPOGO In Canadian folklore, the Manipogo is a lake monster said to live in Lake Manitoba, Manitoba, Canada. The creature was dubbed Manipogo in 1957, the name echoing British Columbia's Ogopogo. There is also a Lake Winnipegosis sea monster called Winnepogo, thought possibly to be the same creature as the lakes are connected. The monster is thought to be anywhere from 12 feet to 50 feet long. It is described as being "A long muddy-brown body with humps that show above the water, and a sheep-like head." There is a provincial park on the west shore of Lake Manitoba named Manipogo Provincial Park. St Laurent, a community on the south east shores of Lake Manitoba, holds a Manipogo festival the first week of March every year. Since the 1800s, people have claimed to have seen the sea monster Manipogo. The local native population has legends of serpent-like creatures in Lake Manitoba going back hundreds of years. A group of seventeen witnesses, all reportedly strangers to one another, claimed to have spotted three Manipogos swimming together. In the early 1960s, Professor James A. McLeod of Manitoba University investigated the creature by trying to locate its remains. If there is a breeding population in the lake, they should be leaving carcasses and bones when they die. McLeod found none. In 2004, commercial fisherman Keith Haden, originally from Newfoundland, reported several of his fishing nets on Lake Manitoba near the narrows one day to be torn up by what seemed like an ocean shark or killer whale. The fish that were in the nets were not nibbled on, but actually torn in half, by what seemed like huge bites. In 2011, Many sightings of several humps emerging and then submerging seen offshore at locations like Marshy Point, Scotch Bay, and Laurentia Beach by security personal patrolling flooded cottage and home areas. MANTIS MAN Mantis Man is a roughly 7 foot tall bug-like creature that has been reported in Hackettstown, New Jersey, near the Musconetcong river. This cryptid mostly resembles a "Praying Mantis" (which is why it's called Mantis Man), and is unlikely to be related to the Mantodea order. The Mantis Man has been featured on Monsters and Mysteries in America. The odd thing about the two sightings that were present is the fact that both men were out fishing and saw it near a body of water. Praying Mantis don't usually spend their times in water; they usually spend their times on leaves and in the forest, though, mantis may be able to swim in shallow water. With its huge size, it can touch the bottom of the river without it's whole body drifting away through the current. In all of the reports, the Mantis Man doesn't harm anyone, it's likely afraid of the people who encounter it because it seems to always run away when they get close to it. Unlike the two on Monsters and Mysteries in America, there was, in fact, another sighting of the Mantis Man. The police report tells that another person "Mr. Strickler" saw the Mantis Man in a river bank:  "I saw something strange a few weeks ago on the M'cong River near my home here in Hackettstown, New Jersey. I was driving home from the drug store on Newburgh Rd. As I drove near the bridge over the river, I noticed to my left something (I thought a fisherman) standing in the river just off the south bank. I slowed the car and looked closer. It wasn't a person and it was transparent-like with a weird shape. It moved slowly towards the bank and into the trees. I drove further so I could see it coming out of the trees. That's the last I saw of it. It was tall, 8 ft. or so and had long thin arms hanging off of it. The color was a pale brown, but I could see through it! The head was small compared to the body.” People claim that the Mantis Man may have been an experiment gone wrong, and someone who couldn't control it just set it free near a river. It could have been a mutation in a breeding situation, unlike it being short it would have been massive. Some people speculate that there are more then just one of these mantis roaming around. The reason why most people think it's a giant mantis instead of being something else, is because it looks and does things like a mantis: Camouflage, spreading its wings, the mouth, etc. While most people think it might just be a large praying mantis, other people suggest that it might be an alien. Possibly, some Aliens may look like insects in some way. It's impossible for the current atmosphere to sustain a praying mantis this large, so it's likely that the Mantis is an aquatic creature resembling a praying mantis. MAPINGUARI According to Brazilian stories, the Mapinguari was once an Amazonian shaman who discovered the key to immortality thousands of years ago. He angered the gods and was severely punished as to his discovery, which forced him to be transformed into a wandering beast for the rest of his life. Most sightings show the beast as a giant sloth, although a few see it as an ape-like creature. Most cryptozoologists speculate that the Mapinguari is either a Megatherium, a large giant ground sloth from the Ice Age that lived in the area, or another species of Giant Sloth. Megatheruim also lived in South America Where it is reported. Many incidents in which several pounds of Mapinguari "hair" and "droppings" were analyzed, it only turned out to be the deposits of giant anteaters and the hair of small rodents. The creature also supposedly has a horrid odor, but not as bad as something like the Skunk Ape's (even tought that in the original stories it's smell can knockout someone). It is said to sometimes be a humanoid creature with a mouth in the middle of its stomach. It is sometimes said to have one eye, long claws, caiman skin, backward feet and a second mouth on its belly. The Mapinguari is featured on the show Beast Hunters. As said in the episode it is also commonly featured in Brazilian culture. This creature is also hunted in the show Monsters Underground, which is on Destination America. Bill Brock and his team head to Graveyard Gulch, located in Northern California, and investigate the reason for recent unexplained black bear deaths. In season 2 episode 5 of Destination Truth the team searches for the Mapinguari in the Amazonian rain-forest. MARICOXI The Maricoxi is a general term for several large ape-like creatures that have allegedly been seen in many parts of the jungle regions of South America. These may be cryptids or merely an undiscovered tribe. Percy Fawcett claimed an encounter with a group in 1914. They allegedly were extremely hairy, lived in villages and used bows and arrows. They spoke in grunts and lived to the northeast of a tribe called the Maxubi. Maricoxi are reported as being aggressive to humans. In alleged encounters, they attack humans on sight. They are said to be scared of the noise of guns. They are generally described as being between 2 and 6 feet tall with occasional reports of giant hominids reaching incredible sizes of 12 feet tall.  MAROZI The marozi or spotted lion is variously claimed by zoologists and cryptozoologists to be a distinct race of lion adapted for a montane rather than savanna- dwelling existence, a rare natural hybrid of a leopard and lion, or an adult lion that retained its childhood spots. It is believed to have been smaller than a lion but slightly larger in size than a leopard and lacking any distinguishable mane. It has been reported in the wild and the skin of a specimen exists, but it has yet to be confirmed as either a separate species or subspecies. Belgian cryptozoologist Dr Bernard Heuvelmans proposed the specific name Leo maculatus in 1955. While Africans have been familiar with the animal and Europeans have been reported seeing spotted lions since roughly 1904, the first documented encounter by a European was in 1931 when Kenyan farmer Michael Trent shot and killed two individuals in the Aberdare Mountains region at an elevation of 10,000 feet. The unusual spotted markings on what seemed to be smallish adult lions prompted interest from the Nairobi Game Department; they were from pubescent lions and yet had prominent spots that are typical only of cubs. A skull believed to belong to a Marozi has also been found. The lower jaw is missing but the upper one has all the teeth intact. The sex is undetermined. It was not from a fully grown animal as the sutures were still open. No reports of the Marozi have surfaced from the Aberdare region since the 1930s and it is believed that the population has long since become extinct. Reports of spotted lions are still fairly common throughout other parts of Africa, though. MBIELU-MBIELU-MBIELU The Mbielu-Mbielu-Mbielu is a cryptid reported from the Likouala Region of the Republic of the Congo. Only a few claimed sightings have been reported, at the villages of Bounila and Ebolo, which were collected by the cryptozoologist Roy Mackal. No physical evidence for the creature exists. Apparently herbivorous, it is described as "the animal with planks growing out of its back" - which has led some writers on the subject to suggest one of the Stegosauridae, most likely a Kentrosaurus. The animal appears to be aquatic, and has mostly green algal growth covering the "planks". MEGALANIA An extinct giant goanna or monitor lizard. They were part of a megafaunal assemblage that inhabited southern Australia during the Pleistocene. They seem to have disappeared sometime after 50,000 years ago. The first aboriginal settlers of Australia might have encountered them. The lack of complete or nearly complete fossil skeletons has made it difficult to determine the exact dimensions of Megalania. Early estimates placed the length of the largest individuals at 23 ft, with a maximum weight of approximately 1,320–1,370 lb. In 2002, Stephen Wroe considerably downsized Megalania, suggesting a maximum length of 15 ft. and a weight of 730 lb. with averages of 11 ft and 214–348 lb. However, in 2009, Wroe, along with other researchers revised upwards their estimates to at least 18 ft and 1,268 lb. Megalania is the largest terrestrial lizard known to have existed. Judging from its size, it would have fed mostly upon medium to large sized animals, including any of the giant marsupials like Diprotodon along with other reptiles and small mammals, as well as birds and their eggs and chicks . It had heavily built limbs and body and a large skull complete with a small crest in between the eyes, and a jaw full of serrated blade-like teeth. Along with other varanid lizards, such as the Komodo dragon and the lace monitor, Megalania belongs to the proposed clade Toxicofera, which contains all known reptile clades possessing toxin-secreting oral glands. While there are occasional reports from Australia and New Guinea of giant lizards similar to Megalania, these reports only began after the species was first described and became publicly known. There is no credible scientific evidence of the existence of a surviving population, with the youngest reliably dated fossil records of giant monitor lizards in Australia being around 50,000 years old. MEGALODON Megalodon ; meaning "big tooth", from Ancient Greek is an extinct species of shark that lived approximately 23 to 2.6 million years ago, during the Cenozoic Era. The taxonomic assignment of Megalodon has been debated for nearly a century, and is still under dispute. Regarded as one of the largest and most powerful predators in vertebrate history, C. Megalodon probably had a profound impact on the structure of marine communities. Fossil remains suggest that this giant shark reached a length of 59 ft, and also indicate that it had a cosmopolitan distribution. Scientists suggest that C. Megalodon looked like a stockier version of the great white shark. The tooth of C. Megalodon is the state fossil of North Carolina. According to Renaissance accounts, gigantic, triangular fossil teeth often found embedded in rocky formations were once believed to be the petrified tongues, or glossopetrae, of dragons and snakes. This interpretation was corrected in 1667 by Danish naturalist Nicolaus Steno, who recognized them as shark teeth, and famously produced a depiction of a shark's head bearing such teeth. C. Megalodon is represented in the fossil record primarily by teeth and vertebral centra. C. Megalodon teeth can measure over 7.1” in slant height or diagonal length, and are the largest of any known shark species. According to their model, a 52 ft long C. Megalodon would have a mass of about 48 metric tons a 56 ft long C. Megalodon would have a mass of about 59 metric tons, and a 67 ft long C. Megalodon would have a mass of 103 metric tons. MELON HEADS Melon Heads is the name given to legendary beings and urban legends in parts of Michigan, Ohio, and Connecticut generally described as small humanoids with bulbous heads, theorized in the 1970s, who occasionally emerge from hiding places to attack people. Different variations of the legend attribute different origins. The melon heads of Michigan are said to reside around Felt Mansion, although they have also been reportedly seen in southern forested areas of Ottawa County. According to one story, they were originally children with hydrocephalus who lived at the Junction Insane Asylum near Felt Mansion. The melon head stories of Ohio are primarily associated with the Cleveland suburb of Kirtland. According to local lore, the melon heads were originally orphans under the watch of a mysterious figure known as Dr. Crow (sometimes spelled Crowe, Trubaino, Krohe or Kroh or known as Dr. Melonhead). Crow is said to have performed unusual experiments on the children, who developed large, hairless heads and malformed bodies. There are several primary Connecticut variations. According to one variation of the myth, Fairfield County was the location of an asylum for the criminally insane that burned down in the fall of 1960, resulting in the death of all of the staff and most of the patients with 10-20 inmates unaccounted for, supposedly having survived and escaped to the woods. Some retelling of this version substitute the asylum with place of business or camp grounds and the inmates with employees, staff or camp-goers. The legend states that the melon heads' appearance is the result of them having resorted to cannibalism in order to survive the harsh winters of the region, and due to inbreeding, which in turn caused them to develop hydrocephalus. According to the second variation, the melon heads are descendants of a Colonial era family from Shelton-Trumbull who were banished after accusations of witchcraft were made against them causing them to retreat to the woods. A number of Connecticut-based legends of the melon heads has one similar characteristics in particular. This characteristic often involve a secluded, rustic or single lane (usually) dirt road running through the melon heads' wooded and forested territory. Many towns in Fairfield County and New Haven County have rural and forested sections and it is not uncommon for these forests to have rural roads running through them. These rural roads at times are associated with the local variation of the Melon Head legend and claim to be part of the Melon Heads territory. While the legend of the Melon Heads is more widely told throughout Southwest Connecticut, one of several other similar legends of deformed or mutated humans/humanoids can be found in various locations of Fairfield and New Haven County. MEMPHRE In Canadian folklore, Memphre is a long-necked lake monster that allegedly lives in Lake Memphremagog, Quebec, Canada. Memphre is often described as much like the Loch Ness Monster. While Memphre and most other lake monsters are disputed by many scientists, sightings persist and Memphre was last seen in 2005. In August 2011, an artistic impression of Memphre was featured on a colored Canadian quarter. MERMAID A legendary aquatic creature with the upper body of a human and the tail of a fish. Mermaids appear in the folklore of many cultures worldwide, including the Near East, Europe, Africa and Asia. Stories of Mermaids originated as early as humans began sailing around 3200 BCE, but may have much earlier roots. Mermaids have been the subject of numerous sightings and hoaxes, such as the Fiji Mermaid. Columbus was sailing off the coast of Hispaniola in 1493. Columbus reported seeing three "female forms" which "rose high out of the water, but were not as beautiful as they are represented". The logbook of Blackbeard, an English pirate, records that he instructed his crew on several voyages to steer away from charted waters which he called "enchanted" for fear of merfolk or mermaids, which Blackbeard himself and members of his crew reported seeing. Two sightings were reported in Canada near Vancouver and Victoria, one from sometime between 1870 and 1890 and the other from 1967. In August 2009, after dozens of people reported seeing a mermaid leaping out of the water and doing aerial tricks, the Israeli coastal town of Kiryat Yam offered a $1 million dollar award for proof of its existence. The Aquatic Ape Hypothesis (AAH), often also referred to as Aquatic Ape Theory (AAT), is a proposal that the evolutionary ancestors of modern humans spent a period of time adapting to a semi-aquatic existence. The Aquatic Ape Hypothesis lacks fossil evidence to support its claims. It is regarded as a simplified version of evolution (evolution is usually more complex). Scientists claim that mermaids have to be a myth, because it is impossible for a creature to be half woman and half fish. A woman is a mammal, which is a very different order of species from a cold-blooded fish. You cannot have both types of creature in the same body of course. To explain mermaid sightings, they claim that the mermaid myth comes from sailors who have mistaken sea-cow, (dugong and manatees) for mermaids. They are so sure of this explanation, that the scientific name for sea-cows is sirenia, (siren is an Ancient Greek word for mermaids). The problem with this dismissive theory is that sea cows only live in tropical waters. It doesn't explain mermaid sighting in the colder waters of Europe, where there are no sea cows and where most mermaid stories arise. Scientists try to account for this by claiming European sailors and fishermen have mistaken seals or dolphins for mermaids. MICHIGAN DOGMAN The Michigan Dogman is a cryptozoological creature first reported in 1887 in Wexford County, Michigan. The creature is described as a seven-foot tall, blue-eyed, or amber-eyed bipedal canine-like animal with the torso of a man and a fearsome howl that sounds like a human scream. According to legends, the Michigan Dogman appears in a ten-year cycle. Sightings have been reported in several locations throughout Michigan, primarily in the northwestern quadrant of the Lower Peninsula. In 1987, the legend of the Michigan Dogman gained popularity when disc jockey Steve Cook at WTCM-FM recorded a song about the creature and its reported sightings. Extensive research being done by Chelsea and Quinton. This creature was unknown to most of the modern world until very late in the twentieth century. It is said to have been stalking the area around the Manistee River since the days when the Odawa tribes lived there. The first known encounter of the Michigan Dogman occurred in 1887 in Wexford County, when two lumberjacks saw a creature which they described as having a man's body and a dog's head. It has also been spotted many times in the Upper Peninsula by locals. Horses that had died of fright were found nearby, surrounded by dog tracks. In 1938 in Paris, Michigan, Robert Fortney was attacked by five wild dogs and said that one of the five walked on two legs. Reports of similar creatures also came from Allegan County in the 1950s, and in Manistee and Cross Village in 1967. Linda S. Godfrey, in her book The Beast of Bray Road, compares the Manistee sightings to a similar creature sighted in Wisconsin known as the Beast of Bray Road. In 2007, a digital copy of an 8mm film surfaced on the Internet. Dubbed "The Gable Film" because of a small paper tag attached to the box containing the film reel, it quickly attained viral status among cryptozoological enthusiasts. Many people believed it was the long-awaited conclusive evidence of the existence of the Michigan Dogman. The entire film is 3.5 minutes long, and appears to have been shot in the mid to late 1960s, due to the clothing and hair styles by the persons in the film, which were most prominent during that time. Early scenes are typical home movie fare: children riding snowmobiles, a German shepherd, a person chopping wood, etc. Toward the end of the film, the photographer is shooting from inside a moving vehicle traveling along a dirt road, when he spots what appears to be a gorilla-like animal moving in a field on the passenger side of the vehicle. The photographer exits the vehicle and seems to pursue the creature for several seconds. Then it appears again, facing the photographer from a ridge about 150 feet away. After a few seconds the creature charges. Rapid movement of the camera suggests the photographer is fleeing the attack. In the last five seconds of the film, the camera drops to the ground, lying on its left side. MILTON LIZARD The Milton Lizard is a cryptid described as resembling a 15-foot monitor lizard that was sighted at Canip Creek, near the town of Milton, in Trimble County, Kentucky, in the summer of 1975. It is one of the lesser-known mystery animals in the field of cryptozoology. The creature was first seen in July by Clarence "Toughy" Cable, co-manager of the Blue Grass Body Shop, a junk and wrecking yard located north of Milton. As Cable was walking through the junkyard, he saw the lizard emerge from behind the wrecked vehicles and it hissed at him several times. He said it had "big eyes similar to a frog's... Beneath its mouth was an off-white color and there were black and white stripes cross ways of its body with quarter-sized speckles over it." Cable's brother Garrett was the next to see the creature on July 27. While working in the junkyard, he saw a pile of old car hoods begin to vibrate and move as the lizard's head and shoulders emerged from underneath the debris. Frightened, he left to get his brother, but when they returned to the area, guns in hand, the creature was gone. The next day, Cable saw the lizard (or one similar to it) again, except this time it appeared to be larger—nearly 15 feet in length. After throwing a rock at it, the lizard hissed at him and fled into some brush. Cable retrieved a rifle from his house and fired into the brush, but couldn't be certain he killed the creature. In early August, a search party scoured the area surrounding the Blue Grass Body Shop for any sign of the lizard, but no evidence was found. During the Trimble Banner's investigation into the sightings, Clarence Cable said the creature looked similar to, but not exactly like, a monitor lizard. He theorized that one of the wrecked vehicles they had acquired in the past from one of the western states contained eggs that hatched in the heat of the junkyard. When wreckage began to be removed in the spring, fewer places existed where the lizard (or lizards) could hide, resulting in the sightings. MINHOCAO The Minhocão was described to European explorers and naturalists in the 19th century by locals in Brazil. French naturalist Augustin Saint-Hilaire described in December 1846 accounts of the Minhocão in the Padre Aranda and Feia lakes, with claims that they lived in the lakes and had "often drawn horses and horned cattle under the water". He determined 'Minhocão' to be an augmentative of 'minhoca', Portuguese for earthworm. Descriptions related to him claimed the creature to have a visible mouth and that it "does not rise to the surface of the water, but that it causes animals to disappear by seizing them by the belly". Other accounts claimed the Minhocão to be "a true fish provided with fins". Saint-Hilaire speculated that the Minhocão described to him may be a large species of South American lungfish. It was also reported in an article in a German scientific journal in 1978 by German naturalist Dr. Fritz Müller, and also summarized in Nature, largely based on accounts by Curitibanos resident Senhor Lebino. It was claimed to exist in the highlands in the South of the country and was described as a "gigantic earth worm, 50 yards in length and 5 in breadth, and covered with bones, as it were with a coat of mail", while other accounts describe it as "30 or 40 feet long and a couple of yards broad". It was said to uproot trees and leave deep trenches in its path, and to prefer damp conditions. The lack of sightings by humans was explained by the Minhocão having "retiring habits". Another claimed sighting came from Francisco de Amaral Varella, who stated that the creature had a snout like a pig. An earlier claim stated that it had horns. A claimed sighting of a dead Minhocão from 1849 stated that it had skin which was "as thick as the bark of a pine tree, and formed of hard scales like those of an armadillo". Müller speculated that it may be a South American lungfish or Ceratodus. The writer of the article in Nature speculated that it may be "a relic of the race of giant armadillos which in past geological epochs were so abundant in Southern Brazil". The Minhocão has been blamed, without sightings, for damage to local roads and the appearance of deep trenches that appear after long spells of rainy weather. Claims of "a rumbling sound like thunder" accompanying its movement, led to suggestions that the Minhocão was simply being used as an explanation for seismic activity in the area. This rumbling sound was also claimed to "presage a period of rainy weather". While scientists were generally skeptical of the veracity of these claims, in May 1878, Müller was reported to have claimed to be about to bring a dead specimen to Europe. Interest in the tale led to a London newspaper proposing in the early 20th century to send an expedition to Brazil to attempt to ascertain whether the Minhocão existed. MITLA The Bolivian Mitla, also known as Fawcett's Cat-Dog is a medium-sized carnivoran and described as a cat-like dog or canid-looking felid from the rainforest in Bolivia. The report comes from Lieutenant Colonel Percy Fawcett who spent time in Bolivia between 1906-1914. Jeremy Mallinson, the director of Jersey Zoo (now Durrell Wildlife Park) searched for the Mitla in 1960. The Mitla may be a canid, or a genus of cat similar to the Jaguarundi . Some authors suspect that it is feline, but more likely it is a dog, and a relative of the short-eared dog. Dr. Karl Shuker described it as a mysterious dog with feline behavior. The place where Lieutenant Colonel Fawcett saw the Mitla may be situated in forests eastern of Cuzco region near to Madidi jungle (established in 1995 to range Bolivian National Park). This is also where Atelocynus microtis lives, which some writers say is the Mitla, although the Mitla is almost twice as big, and darker in color. MNGWA Mngwa (the strange one) or Nunda is a gigantic, ferocious, dark gray or black nocturnal feline, said to stalk Tanzania. Described as, "the size of a donkey," English contact with this animal first began in the 1900s. In 1938, an open-minded discussion of this animal appeared in the then-world-famous British scientific journal Discovery. William Hichens, a British administrator working in Tanzania reported that several natives were attacked by this animal. He thought it to be a giant, man-eating lion that was responsible, but both fur-samples and tracks were different from those of a lion. In Frank W. Lane's 1954 issue of Nature Parade, Patrick Bowen, a hunter who tracked the Mngwa at one time, remarked that the animal's tracks were like those of the leopard but much larger. The Mngwa was also described to have brindled fur that was visibly different from that of a leopard. Lane believed that the attacks reported in the 19th century by the Chimiset, associated with the Nandi Bear, might actually have been attacks by the Mngwa. Bernard Heuvelmans speculated Mngwa to be an abnormally colored specimen of a known species, or that it may even be a larger subspecies of the African golden cat. MOA When people first arrived in New Zealand, they encountered giant wingless birds known as Moas (the family Dinornithidae). These birds were distinct from their relatives (tinamous, cassowaries, emu, ostriches. though their closest relatives are flighted south american tinamous) which possessed wings, whereas Moas had lost the bones completely. The largest Moa species could reach up to 13 feet in size, larger than any other bird on the islands. Due to what many believe to be over hunting by early Maori, Moas became extinct sometime between the late 1300s and early 1500s.However, in the 1840s, Australian bird painter John Gould reported seeing what he described as "giant kiwis" on the South Island of New Zealand, that were around 3 feet tall and had spurred feet. Gould's spurred feet description had matched those of fossilized Moa footprints found on the North Island. In 1978, a Japanese research team investigated the South Island to see if Moas were still living in the area, but didn't gain any evidence of continued survival. It has been suggested that the people reporting have seen Moas were exaggerating, or seeing large individuals of known birds, such as Cassowaries or Emu. Others however, still argue that some small species of Moa have survived to the present. MOEHAU The Moehau (also called the Maeroero) is reputed to be a large, hairy hominid cryptid in the Coromandel-Moehau ranges of New Zealand's North Island. It may be synonymous with the Maero, another New Zealand cryptid, because both have been reported to have long, sharp fingers in some sources. Some Māori people suggest that the creature is a descendant of the Maero, but another explanation for the Moehau is that it was an exaggerated report of an escaped gorilla. However, in 1970, County Councillor J. Reddy told Robyn Gosset that the Hairy Moehau was an exaggeration started from a joke. Also in 1970, Bob Grey told researcher Robyn Gosset that the term Moehau Monster came from a name given to a Yankee steam hauler that was utilized for logging. In New Zealand Mysteries by Nicola McCloy, the author discredits both theories by citing several Moehau sightings during the early 19th century. MOGOLLAN MONSTER The Mogollon Monster is reported to be a bipedal humanoid, over 7 feet tall, with inhuman strength, and large eyes that some claim to be "wild and red". Its body is said to be covered with long black or reddish brown hair, with the exclusion of the chest, face, hands and feet. Reports claim it has a strong and pungent odor described as that of "dead fish, a skunk with bad body odor, decaying peat moss and the musk of a snapping turtle". Stories say the creature is nocturnal, omnivorous, very territorial and sometimes very violent. It is generally reported to: walk with wide, inhuman strides; leave behind footprints measuring 22 inches in length; mimic birds, coyotes and other wildlife; emit unusual whistle sounds; explore campsites after dark; build "nests" out of pine needles, twigs, and leaves; and hurl stones from locations that are hidden from view. The creature has also been said to decapitate deer and other wildlife prior to consumption. In numerous reports, the monster has been said to emit a "blood-curdling" scream; described as sounding like a woman in "great distress". Accounts of the creature regularly describe an "eerie silence prior to the encounter, an appreciable stillness in the woods that commonly surrounds predatory animals." Marjorie Grimes, a Whiteriver, Arizona resident, claimed to have sighted the creature a number of times between 1982 and 2004. She described the creature as black, tall, and walking in big strides. A number of people on the Fort Apache Indian Reservation also claimed to have seen the creature. Generally the scientific community attributes creature sightings to either hoaxes or misidentification. As recently as the early 1930s, grizzly bears roamed the forests of Arizona. These may account for the early day sightings while other large mammals such as black bears, mountain lions and elk may account for the sightings of today. MOKELE-MBEMBE Mokele-mbembe, "one who stops the flow of rivers") is a water-dwelling entity, sometimes described as a living creature, sometimes as a spirit. During the early 20th century, descriptions of the entity increasingly reflected public fascination with dinosaurs, including aspects of particular dinosaur species now known among scientists to be incorrect, and the entity became increasingly described alongside a number of purported living dinosaurs in Africa. Over time, the entity became a point of focus in particular among adherents of the pseudosciences of cryptozoology and young Earth creationism, resulting in numerous expeditions led by cryptozoologists and funded by young Earth creationists and groups with the aim of finding evidence that invalidates scientific consensus regarding evolution. Paleontologist Donald Prothero remarks that "the quest for Mokele Mbembe ... is part of the effort by creationists to overthrow the theory of evolution and teaching of science by any means possible". Additionally, Prothero observes that "the only people looking for Mokele-mbembe are creationist ministers, not wildlife biologists." 1909 saw the first mention of a brontosaurus-like creature in Beasts and Men, the autobiography of famed big-game hunter Carl Hagenbeck. He claimed to have heard from two independent sources about a creature living in Rhodesia which was described to them by natives as "half elephant, half dragon." The creature is said to live in the caves that have been washed out by the river in the clay of its shores at sharp bends. It is said to climb the shores even at daytime in search of food; its diet is said to be entirely vegetable. MOMO Momo is the name of a local legend, similar to the Bigfoot, which is reported to live in Missouri. The name Momo is short for 'Missouri Monster' and it is reported to have a large, pumpkin-shaped head, with a furry body, and hair covering the eyes. First reported in 1971, near Louisiana, Missouri by Joan Mills and Mary Ryan, Momo was first reported up and down the Mississippi River with later sightings documented further west by travel of water ways. It is supposedly a large, 7 ft tall, hairy, black, manlike creature that emits a terrible odor. Some suggest it was a rogue American Indian. Following sightings in 1972 beginning at 3:30 pm July 11, first reported by Terry, Wiley, and Doris Harrison, and lasting for about 2 weeks, tracks were found and submitted to Lawrence Curtis, director of the Oklahoma City Zoo and Botanical Garden. He deemed the tracks to be that of an unknown primate species. MONGOLIAN DEATH WORM The creature first came to Western attention as a result of Roy Chapman Andrews's 1926 book On the Trail of Ancient Man. The American paleontologist was not convinced by the tales of the monster that he heard at a gathering of Mongolian officials: "None of those present ever had seen the creature, but they all firmly believed in its existence and described it minutely." In 1983 a specimen of Tartar sand boa was shown to locals who claimed to have seen "olgoi-khorkhoi" and they confirmed that this was the animal they called "olgoi-khorkhoi". The worms are purportedly between two and five feet long and are thick-bodied. The worm is said to inhabit the western or southern Gobi. In the 1987 book Altajn Tsaadakh Govd, Ivan Mackerle described it as travelling underground, creating waves of sand on the surface which allow it to be detected. The Mongolians say it can kill at a distance, either by spraying a venom at its prey or by means of electric discharge. They say that the worm lives underground, hibernating most of the year except for June and July, when it becomes active. It is also reported that it most often comes to the surface when it rains and the ground is wet. The Mongolians believe that touching any part of the worm will cause almost instant death and tremendous pain. It has been told that the worm frequently preyed on camels and laid eggs in its intestines, and eventually acquired the trait of its red-like skin. Its venom supposedly corrodes metal and local folklore tells of a predilection for the color yellow. The worm is also said to have a preference for local parasitic plants such as the Goyo. Reality-television series Destination Truth conducted an expedition from 2006–2007. MONKEY MAN OF NEW DELHI In May 2001, reports began to circulate in the Indian capital New Delhi of a strange monkey-like creature that was appearing at night and attacking people. Eyewitness accounts were often inconsistent, but tended to describe the creature as about four feet tall, covered in thick black hair, with a metal helmet, metal claws, glowing red eyes and three buttons on its chest; others, however, described the Monkey-man as having a more vulpine snout, and being up to eight feet tall, and muscular; it would leap from building to building. Many people reported being scratched, and two (by some reports, three) people even died when they leapt from the tops of buildings or fell down stairwells in a panic caused by what they thought was the attacker. At one point, exasperated police even issued artist's impression drawings in an attempt to catch the creature. MONTAUK MONSTER In the summer of 2008, a mysterious glob of mammal flesh washed ashore upon the northern coast of Long Island. Dubbed “Montauk Monster”, it soon attracted attention from the media as well as speculators and cryptozoologists. Some were guessing it was a dead raccoon, dog or pig. Some said it was experimented on the nearby island Plum island, an island with lots of conspiracy theories surrounding it. Most agree that the corpse was likely a racoon, due to the fingers and body shape, though the skull appear to be beaked. A second Montauk monster was found later that appeared similiar, but different, though since no others have appeared, it was probably a hoax. While general interest and theories on the subject gradually subsided over the last year, it quickly regained momentum this year, after another “Montauk Monster” was found on the beach last month. The new photographs look fairly different than the original. It’s not clear whether this is a copy-cat incident, or a continuation of the viral marketing. While the second monster is believed to be a hoax, the creature's corpse was proven to be a raccoon that decomposed underwater. Therefore, the Montauk Monster is a former Cryptid. MORAG Morag or Mòrag (Scottish Gaelic) is a loch monster reported to live in Loch Morar, Scotland. After Nessie, it is among the best known of Scotland's legendary monsters. The name "Morag" is a pun on the name of the Loch, and of the Scottish female name, "Morag". Sightings date back to 1887, and include some 34 incidents as of 1981. Sixteen of these involved multiple witnesses. In 1948 "a peculiar serpent-like creature about 20 ft long" was reported by nine people in a boat, in the same place as the 1887 sighting. The best known encounter, in 1969, featured two men, Duncan McDonnel and William Simpson, and their speedboat, with which they accidentally struck the creature, prompting it to hit back. McDonnel retaliated with an oar, and Simpson opened fire with his rifle, whereupon it sank slowly out of sight. They described it as being brown, 25-30 feet long, and with rough skin. It had three humps rising 18 inches above the loch's surface, and a head a foot wide, held 18 inches out of the water. A pair of photographs taken in 1977 by Miss M Lindsay show an object in the loch which is claimed to be Morag. The object appears to have moved several yards from one picture to the other. The first picture shows a round back, while the second picture seems to show two humps. The Loch Ness Investigation Bureau expanded its search to include Loch Morar in February 1970. Several expeditions with the aim to prove or find the monster have been made, but no evidence for an unknown, large creature has been found. MOTHMAN In West Virginia folklore, the Mothman is a creature reportedly seen in the Point Pleasant area from November 12, 1966, to December 15, 1967. The first newspaper report was published in the Point Pleasant Register dated November 16, 1966, titled "Couples See Man-Sized Bird ... Creature ... Something". The national press soon picked up the reports and helped spread the story across the United States. The Mothman was introduced to a wider audience by Gray Barker in 1970 and later popularized by John Keel in his 1975 book The Mothman Prophecies, claiming that there were supernatural events related to the sightings, and a connection to the collapse of the Silver Bridge. The Mothman appears in popular culture. The 2002 film The Mothman Prophecies, starring Richard Gere, was based on Keel's book. An annual festival in Point Pleasant is devoted to the Mothman legend. On November 12, 1966, five men who were digging a grave at a cemetery near Clendenin, West Virginia, claimed to see a man-like figure fly low from the trees over their heads. This is often identified as the first known sighting of what became known as the Mothman. Shortly thereafter, on November 15, 1966, two young couples from Point Pleasant, Roger and Linda Scarberry and Steve and Mary Mallette, told police they saw a large gray creature whose eyes "glowed red" when the car's headlights picked it up. They described it as a "large flying man with ten-foot wings", following their car while they were driving in an area outside of town known as "the TNT area", the site of a former World War II munitions plant. During the next few days, other people reported similar sightings. Two volunteer firemen who saw it said it was a "large bird with red eyes". Mason County Sheriff George Johnson commented that he believed the sightings were due to an unusually large heron he termed a "shitepoke". Contractor Newell Partridge told Johnson that when he aimed a flashlight at a creature in a nearby field its eyes glowed "like bicycle reflectors", and blamed buzzing noises from his television set and the disappearance of his German Shepherd dog on the creature. Wildlife biologist Dr. Robert L. Smith at West Virginia University told reporters that descriptions and sightings all fit the sandhill crane, a large American crane almost as high as a man with a seven-foot wingspan featuring circles of reddish coloring around the eyes, and that the bird may have wandered out of its migration route. This particular crane was unrecognized at first because it was not native to this region. After the December 15, 1967, collapse of the Silver Bridge and the death of 46 people, the incident gave rise to the legend and connected the Mothman sightings to the bridge collapse. Some pseudoscience adherents (such as ufologists, paranormal authors, and cryptozoologists) claim that Mothman was an alien, a supernatural manifestation, or a previously unknown species of animal. In his book, author John Keel claimed that the Point Pleasant residents experienced precognitions including premonitions of the collapse of the Silver Bridge, unidentified flying object sightings, visits from inhuman or threatening men in black, and other phenomena. MUHURU The Muhuru is a cryptid reported from the jungles of Kenya. The eyewitnesses described it as a huge, heavily armored beast with large, thick bony plates on its back and a huge club-like tail. Missionary Cal Bombay and his wife made the first report of the creature. There is speculation that this creature may well be a surviving species of the plant-eating dinosaur called the Stegosaurus. Believed to have been extinct for 150 million years, the Stegosaurus was a large, herbivorous quadruped from the Late Jurassic period. Contrary to witness descriptions of the Muhuru, Stegosaurus was not heavily armored, and had a thagomizer at the end of its tail, rather than a bony club. However both are features found in Ankylosaurs, another group of armored dinosaurs. Another postulate is that in the 150 million years since the youngest Stegosaurus fossils were found, this subspecies might have developed new features, like a clubbed tail or lighter armor. MURRAY In Papua New Guinea there is a cryptid called the Murray. It was first seen by a canoe of native villagers. The next day it was claimed to be seen by two missionaries. This animal is said to be a bipedal, amphibious creature, approximately 6-feet in width, with two, short forelimbs, legs as wide as palm tree trunks, a long neck, and a slender tail. The creature's head has been compared to that of a large eyed bovine with teeth as long as a man's fingers. Its back is said to have "largish triangular scoops" and its epidermis has been likened to that of the more familiar crocodile. It looks like a T.rex and could be a surviving one. It is often confused with the Carolina Murray lake monster Messie. After it was accused of eating some dogs, six policemen with M-16 assault rifles and some villagers carrying bush knives tried to find the monster but found nothing. In June of 2000, reports emanating from Irian Jaya (the Indonesian section of New Guinea) stated that missionaries had traveled to the Lake Murray region armed with paleontology books in order to confirm these reports. According to this account, island natives grew agitated when they saw the images of a dinosaur which they believed to be the monster in the lake. It was spotted by a man who saw it while playing tennis in during June, 2013. A-B C-F G-k L-M