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Sunday, 7 July 2013

Some Longnecked SeaSerpents

The Sumerian image of Tiamat has been identified as the oldest portrait of a Longneck we can feel pretty certain of according to Ted Holliday: the head and neck are in about the same position as the "Surgeon's Photo" at Loch Ness (Above)
These Plesiosaurian Viking "Sea Dragon" has exaggerated spines on their backs and exaggerated forefin "Wings"-The image is identified as meaning the Midgard serpent but it shows TWO creatures
The image above is a native petroglyph named "Puff the Magic Dragon" by sightseers and suggested to be a "Living dinosaur." Actually it is clearly a variation on the local "Water Monster" or Avan-Yu..

 This witness' sketch of "Cadborosaurus" shows how the top half of the "Stretched-S" shape is the same thing as is usually called the "Periscope" position. The rearward section I also judge to be the base of the neck becoming much broader before merging into the bulkier body.

A number of these illustrations from In The Wake of Sea Serpents (following) turned up during my recent researches and so I thought I'd make use of them here.

We have had a long discussion about this fellow on separate occasions before, most recently in the "Sea Giraffe" article. I am now considering if I should add this picture there or write a new blog now that I have this picture available. Incidentally, the eyes/irises looking blue or grey is a feature that has been noted on other occasions, and apparently the eyes are surrounded by a ring of ski the same colour as the eyes (Peter O'Connor surmised this in In Search of Lake Monsters, but the exact statement of this observation has been around since the late 1700s and early 1800s)

Below are some early Longnecks, some of them confusingly leaving the "Many-Humped/String of buoys" effect in the wake: these first two are marked as ?SO for no especially good reason.


The mast was 18 feet tall. This is like the Umfuli SS turned up on end. 


These ones were apparently drawn as too thick by the witnesses: both feature the "Sawtoothed" back ridge. The one below was represented in a different drawing in the blog about "Cadborosaurus"

(This Massachusetts Bay SS on the other hand looks like a standard threehumper): 


This creature has the usual very broad and flat head attributed to BOTH The Longneck and the Merhorse: Oudemans also agrees to the proportions that the head is half as thick as it is long, but the width is 2/3 the length. The eyes are not actually directed forward, they merely seem so from this view: from the side the eyes are described as being more "Elongated"


This very confusing "Plesiosaur" drawing evidently means to show a "String of Buoys"
Very likely the sketch is so misleadingly different from whatever was actually seen as to be valueless. The witness did insist he had seen a Plesiosaur with "Erected nostrils" that others took to be "Ears"

This thick bodied Sea Serpent matches a sighting at Loch Ness where the head was not brought up out of the water. We can only imagine the witness exaggerated the thickness in his drawing

This one evidently showed a hind flipper up out of the water while it was being watched. Once again, a good length of tail is behind the rear flipper.

This is an obscure sighting made before the Surgeon's photo was taken at Loch Ness but displaying a neck of much the same shape. It was only published after the photo had been in circulation but was supposedly based on a drawing made in earlier letters.

This one has its neck in the typical arched position often seen while the animal is fishing, only it has been startled and is now looking up. Several Plesiosaurs have a head shaped like that.

 The Cuba SS was cited by Heuvelmans as having no tail. On the other hand, I read the drawing as showing a definite tail about as long as the definite part of the neck, very short and thick and quite possibly with a large fin on it. The cloaca would be about directly under the second hump back on this one, going by the shape of the body, and the two humps seem to correspond to where the foreflippers and rear flippers would be. Its actually a pretty decent depiction allowing for that


The Bali SS has a similar "Turtleheaded" appearance to the Valhalla creature, and upon checking the neck is at standard Longneck proportions for the forepart of the neck (Neck a foot thick and ten feet long, being the statistical average for a creature 40 feet long. The head of such a creature is about 2 feet long) See below:

The Campania SS reported by Sir Arthur Rostron turns out to match the top part of a neck of those same proportions.

Evidently the Vondel SS briefly held up a foreflipper near its head (below)
This would appear to have been a maned male "Merhorse" instead of just an ordinary "Longneck"
Although the illustrations SEEM very different, the creatures seen by the ships HMS Daedalus and the City of Baltimore were actually very similar and described in nearly the same terms.

The conventional explanation of the Fly SS is that it was a kind of a Plesiosaur,
but Heuvelmans opts for a Mosasaur or a kind of sea-crocodile instead.


 This rather repulsice creature was called a Merhorse by Heuvelmans. That could be right because the head seen on top of the water was very  small in comparison to the
 very large body that was indicated as being underwater.
This is an illustration of a Brazilian encounter from a book of fairy tales.

The Mystery of the Monster of Limerick Dock
Way back in October 2005, when was but a mewling babe, I related the blood-curdling (1922) tale of The Mystery of the Monster of Limerick Docks. At the time I promised to dig out a copy of Denis O'Shaughnessy's Limerick: 100 Stories of the Century to flesh out the rather sketchy details I'd gleaned from Graham J. McEwan's Mystery Animals of Britain and Ireland and the Limerick Leader. Despite my half-arsed efforts the book had remained, like mystery beasties themselves, frustratingly elusive. That is, until now.

Goodbye sketchy details, hello not-very-detailed sketch:

The artist was one Stephen O'Gorman (a Limerickian who'd emigrated to Birmingham) and the above depiction was submitted to the Limerick Leader after they'd reprinted the story in 1974.

Stephen was a teenager at the time and was playing handball in Shannon Street with several of his pals when suddenly they noticed that people were gathering in large numbers at the quayside. "We immediately joined them and to our amazement saw this strange creature in the middle of the river. It was travelling very slowly towards Sarsfield Bridge."
"The creature travelled as far as Limerick Boat Club and then turned back[...]A group of Free State soliders with rifles came dashing by (I believe they came out of the Strand Barracks) and they kept pace with the creature. When it passed the end of the Docks…they opened fire from Cleeve's Bank and every so often they repeated the shooting until the creature passed Barrington's Pier and finally disappeared into the distance."
"They did not hit it, merely content to hit the water just behind it. I believe they were just trying to encourage it on its way".

A parallel read of the events of the time is the Book "Not while I have Ammo" written by Jim Corbett which is the story of Jim's Grandfather Captain Connie Mackey.. The book is a worthy read of the History of Captain Connie Mackey....Defender of the Strand who was defending the Strand Barracks, Limerick whilst all this was happening.

In the case of the Tyne Sea-Serpent (below) the head and neck were stuck up unusually high, over 35 feet, and the back trailing behind it unusually long, perhaps 90-100 feet long, and in this case I feel it is much  more likely the witnesses were viewing a waterspout. 


  1. I have heard it proposed often by skeptics that floating logs are responsible for the majority of longnecked aquatic cryptid reports (and that features such as the eyes, nostrils, and supposed euryapsid openings behind the eye are imagined or added on by the witnesses.) I have never heard this idea challenged by any cryptozoologist (after all, many logs that would look like a plesiosaur if seen floating on the surface of the water have been found.)

    1. Joe, this hypothesis is extremely unlikely in reference to sea serpent sightings. In fact, statistics of report data indicated that a majority of sightings have occurred at a close range, making misidentification of even other known animal species very unlikely. Also, notable zoologists and naval ship captains have made excellent observations of longnecks, and thus the log hypothesis just falls apart.

  2. You are mistaken, the matter has come up in almost every standard book on the Loch Ness Monster and usually the author admits that skeptics regularly allege that many sightings are based on logs but then they say that not all Longneck necks can be logs because they are seen to flex and bend, travel at speed, change direction, slow down and speed up again, or open and close mouths, etc. So far you are the only one to suggest euryapsid skull openings are imagined by witnesses, which is an extremely unlikely circumstance since very few people even know what those are. There actually are a few sightings which turn out to be sticks and logs but they are remarkably few and far between.

  3. like I said: the witnesses would likely add their own details to their sighting or leave important details out in order to make the sighting consistent with the popular media image of that particular cryptid. It is equally likely that the witnesses memories of the event are poor because the sightings are often reported long after the event (and it is also possible that the account is distorted BY the media itself to create a consistent picture of a particular cryptid.)I have never heard a strong rebuttle to these arguments before.

    1. NO, that explanation will NOT work in the case of when witnesses report anatomical features which make sense and which they would NOT have known about before, such as the Euryapsid skull markings.

  4. Note: I do not consider these common skeptical arguments to be valid; I simply have heard no strong rebuttle to them.

  5. Well then you should keep out of the argument and leave it to others that know better than you do. You strike me as another indifferent reader who simply is not paying attention from these comments and questions you are always making. You are always starting from a position of ignorance and for some reason you assume that is normal. Had you done extensive background reading on this subject you would have come across the information you must needs ask me about. And then to add to that, when I DO give you a reference you will most commonly ignore what I told you anyway.

  6. I DO ackknowledge your point here, Dale; I am just pointing out that when discussing cryptids in terms of eyewitness testimony, nothing is certain (even if misidentification is unlikely, as it is in this case) because we aren't talking about something known from one or more physical specimens.

  7. Although there is something to what you say, there is also the factor that I have mentioned, and you can't have it both ways. If a witness makes a significant observation without realizing what it is, that is a very powerful thing. Witnesses may also be mistaken or forget things: but the fact that they can also remember significant details without being aware of their importance mitigates against the claim that the testimony should or indeed could be just written off. You make fart too many blanket assertions, Joe, and you will find that real life very frequently does not work that way.

  8. To "Joe Richardson" who for the following two nights in a row has continued to assert that certain sightings of the Loch Ness Monster should be regarded as logs and such indicated features as Euryapsid skull openings be disregarded because of it: You are talking in circles, mister, and that is why I am not allowing your postings. If you are actually asking my opinion on these matters kindly reread what I answered to you above over again as applying to the same situation over again. If you are attempting to change my mind by simple repeated assertion of a plain opinion, it isn't going to happen; and furthermore I'm not particularly impressed if you tell me "X says the sightings are logs." Once again, a deferment to a higher authority is one of the earmarks of a pseudoscientist and I have told you that before. Excuse me for saying so but endless repetitions of a log identity theory does nothing other than make you out to be a Log Crank.

    Any more needless repetitions of the same idea shall also be deleted.

  9. don't ocean sunfish produce a 'periscope" illusion when their high rear fin is sticking out of the water?

  10. Only of the smallest sort, only a yard high or possibly exaggerated into something up to six feet tall-but ONLY in this smallest size range. There are however a few sightings which would qualify. The longnecks which consistently report the forward part of the neck as a foot thick and ten feet long, and which specify the small head turning over at the top of the periscope, would never qualify.

  11. It should be noted that the modern "flap" pf nessie sightings began at about the same time trees were being cut down and thrown into the lake due to construction work on an old road; coincidence, or evidence that many of the witnesses were seeing logs?

    1. It might seem so if what you said was so. What you said was NOT so. The sightings came a good whileafter the trees were cut down, and we are talking years after in most cases.

  12. Alleged sightings of longnecked sea serpents come from seas, lakes, and rivers across the globe; if they really are plesiosaurs, why hasn't any conclusive evidence of their existance been found?

    1. Oh Joe you NEVER listen, do you?

      First off, the business about the Euryapsid skull openings is absolutely diagnostic and would be absolutely proof if more scientists would only look at the suggestion. None of your lip back now, I know that is all Greek to you, and in fact because it is all Greek to you your opinion on the matter is worthless anyway.

      Secondly, We do have some other alleged remains which have not been disproven as being decayed basking sharks or anything else. Once again, this does not concern anything you would have heard of, and its not what you think. But the representations of other specific aspects of Plesiosaurian anatomy including limb girdles, ventral ribs and the bones in the flippers as made by "Primitive, uneducated" peoples is often exact enough to also be diagnostic. This does include representations of long necks with the Plesiosaurian number of vertebrae (something like 30) and not the mammalian standard seven neck bones.

      Thirdly we do have several published and well-known post-Cretaceous Plesiosaur fossils spanning most of the length of the Age of Mammals and going up to including the Ice Age, if Scott Mardis' later examples are to be trusted. Even discounting those we have very good instances of Plesiosaur bones in association with the fossil bones of A) Archaeocetes (Primitive whale ancestors) and B ) more modern types of dolphins. One of the "Iffy" finds is a set of several Plesiosaur vertebrae allegedly from Loch Ness-in this case the problem is the point of origin cannot be verified.

      Fourthly, it makes no nevermind whether or not any of this is "Proven" to your satisfaction or anybody else's. That this evidence exists alone is enough to say that a scientific case for survival DOES exist.

      Now, the next time you go on ahead and parrot off the exact same question to me again I shall not print it. We have done this dance to the death.

    2. As another footnote to this, I have never said that "ALL" of the alleged Lake Monsters or whatever of the world were Plesiosaurs. What I have said is that there is one cosmopolitan Plesiosaurian species which on RARE occasions wanders into freshwater. On the whole of North America I make that out as two or three locations currently. Most of the reports are riverine and temporary only: the riverine journeys that dead-end out into lakes are more long-term but also only temporary, until the individual animal dies or gets loose again. The majority of the Lake Monster reports I do not call Plesiosaurs and in fact I do not call Water Horses Plesiosaurs: nor yet do I call them Longnecks. Main reason being their necks are not usually long. So when you are aiming your questions at what you think I am saying, you are arguing pointlessly because I never said that in the first place, nor yet do I believe things happen that way.

  13. Wouldn't it be hard for a giant marine reptile (which would breathe air) to wander into freshwater lakes unnoticed?

    1. This "Giant marine reptile" masses about as much as the largest seals, which was a point brought up on another recent entry: it is just built different with the long neck and tail stretching out the mass over a more elongated frame. It doesn't necessarily draw a lot of water (need water very deep to swim in) which was another different point made on another blog discussion. And it need not expose more than a couple of square inches of surface area (the nostrils) in order to breathe at the surface unnoticed. That last was a point made by Burton back when he was discussing the Plesiosaur theory at Loch Ness. Furthermore another different blog pointed out how very oblivious normal people are too anything unusual in their midst until the news media draws attention to the unusual item and makes a big fuss over it. So I would say once again that your cluelessness, general ignorance, limited imagination and reliance on other people's very trite arguments has made you look the fool once more. Don't you ever get tired of doing this to yourself?


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