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Adventures in Demon Hunting 7, or An Account of Creatures Strange and Wondrous: Seriously fishy characters 1: Bunyip

The Australian Bunyip is now sadly on the Mythical Endangered Species list. The draining of its natural mythical habitat, swamps and billabongs, and the damming of rivers for electric plants, has greatly reduced sightings of this folktale monster.

It was never intrinsically bad, like the Kelpie or the Nuckelavee, but the Bunyip is shy of humans and will defend its territory by killing if it has to, and if hungry enough, will hunt humans for food. It normally eats lobster and crayfish.

No one really agrees on what the Bunyip looks like. There are lots of variations, but the general theme is that itโ€™s four-legged, is the size of a bull, with an emu’s neck and horse’s mane and tail. It has a seal’s flippers and two tusks that descend from its upper jaw.

We do know it burrows into river/swamp banks, creating a cozy den for itself, where it lays its soft-shelled eggs, a bit like a turtle.

But nobody’s seen one for a while. Except for this sculpture from the Canadian Museum of Civilization. (If you look closely in the glass, you can see me typing research notes on Jolaine’s iPhone.)

 Bunyip sculpture, Gerald Francis Lewers, 1934

Sources

Tasmanian Journal of Natural Science, Agriculture, Statistics, Etc, Published by J. Barnard., 1849

Oliver Ho, Josh Cochran; Mysteries Unwrapped: Mutants & Monsters, Sterling Publishing Company, Inc., 2008

A Field Guide to Demons, Fairies, Fallen Angels and Other Subversive Spirits
A Field Guide to Demons, Fairies, Fallen Angels and Other Subversive Spirits

by Carol K. Mack, Dinah Mack

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About teresawilde

Author of Young Adult Paranormals, Paranormal Romance, Historical Paranormal Romance, tragical- comical-historical-pastoral, scene individable, and poem unlimited.

One response to “Adventures in Demon Hunting 7, or An Account of Creatures Strange and Wondrous: Seriously fishy characters 1: Bunyip

  1. In Rites of Clay, one of the characters drives an amphibious vehicle which I named after the bunyip. ๐Ÿ™‚ The book where I read about bunyips didn’t have a picture though, so it’s cool to get to see what they’re supposed to look like. Thanks for posting this, and for bringing us so many interesting mythological creatures, Teresa!

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