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Saturday, April 24, 2010

LINDSAY SELBY: Florida Lake Monsters in the news

Florida Lake monsters have been in the news:

'In the United States alone, researchers list 222 lakes and rivers as alleged cryptid habitats,' Michael Newton wrote in “Florida’s Unexpected Wildlife.”

“It was green and black and a yellowish mingled colors, and they watched it crawl to the sea,” Emily Bell wrote of an encounter in Jupiter in “My Pioneer Days in Florida, 1876-1898.” “It raised its head and looked all around till it turned their way. Then they said it looked like a human face. It stood up about three or four feet. They measured to where its tail was and to where the head was and it was about 30 feet long and looked the size of a small nail keg.” “In 1885, a ship moored in the New River inlet found that its anchor had snagged on something. When the crew finally brought the heavy anchor up, they saw that it had hooked a dead serpent-like carcass,” Charlie Carlson wrote in “Weird Florida.” “The creature was described as being over 40 feet long and six feet wide, with two front flippers and a long skinny neck. It was in a bad state of decomposition and was never scientifically studied, but it would sure smell like a dead plesiosaur to a cryptozoologist.”

Some of Florida’s monsters have even earned names. “Pinky,” for instance, is said to haunt the St. John’s River near Jacksonville, while the “Astor Monster” in Lake County has been the subject of reports for more than a century. “In the late 1960s fishing guide Buck Dillard and two of his clients encountered a beast ‘the size of an elephant’ while trolling on the St. Johns River near Lake Dexter,” Newton wrote of the Astor Monster. “Dillard says the creature walked along the river bottom, thus presumably eliminating possible confusion with a manatee.”

Extracts from Source:


Interestingly enough there is something in Lake County:

Teenager Talks About Battle With Alligator POSTED: 8:21 am EDT July 25, 2006

DELAND, Fla. -- A Central Florida boy was released from a hospital Monday after being attacked by an alligator. Officials said they believe the alligator was about 11 feet long, and the teenager was able to fight off the attack, WESH 2 News reported. Corey Workman, 16, said he learned what to do to escape by watching television. He suffered puncture wounds on his leg and nerve damage. "At first it was just a reaction. I just kept punching, and I pulled myself together. I kept on thinking, 'I'm not going to die this way,'" Workman said. Workman and some friends were on the water's edge near Astor in Lake County Saturday night when he felt something grab his left ankle. He said he instinctively started throwing punches, and then when he realized it was an alligator, he remembered what he had seen many times on the Discovery Channel. "I grabbed its jaw, and I put all my weight back so it would roll over, and I could get closer to it. I put my right thumb in its eye, and as I did that, it let go," Workman said. A trapper sent out Sunday to look for the reptile caught an 11-foot alligator. It will now be up to a forensic tooth expert to compare the bite marks on Workman's leg with the teeth of the alligator. If they can confirm it is the alligator that bit Workman, the teenager said he would love to have it. "I'll probably use it as a trophy. I'll stuff its head or something and keep it," Workman said. Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officials said even though it's the fourth alligator attack this summer, they are very rare. They said the best way to protect yourself is to avoid hanging out in vegetated areas of water, especially this time of year.



So it appears the tales may have some truth in them but in this case it may be a known creature rather than an unknown one. That isn’t to say there aren’t any unknown creatures out there .

1 comment:

Dale Drinnon said...

Buck Dillard's elephant-sized creature in the St. Johns river sounds like an elephant seal: and it was basically another version pof "Old 3-toes" walking along the bottom-on the opposite side of Florida from where Sanderson was investigating the tracks (some of which were admitedly man-made copies-Sanderson said he could tell the difference)

Emily Bell's sighting also sounds like a seal, although the colours are peculiar (because of algae or waterweeds on it?) and seals are sometimes said to have human-like faces. 30 feet is once again commonly used in such reports, including onthe St. Johns River. Elephant seals also shed their skins in patches seasonally and hence they can look pinkish at times (Also fights between males can be quite bloody)

The giant alligator reports are also interesting because at least some of them seem to be describing something like an Indopacific or Saltie croc, also commonly known as an alligator in Australia.