The general consensus in the scientific community is that most of these creatures are the likely product of honest misidentification or, more often then not, outright fabrication by storytellers, poets and adventurers, who hoped to both enhance their reputations and entertain their audiences by weaving ever more fantastic tales.
Some historians have suggested that these creatures may simply be the product of humanities collective imagination — fueled by wonder, curiosity and outright terror — attempting to fill the void that surrounded them in the ages before the great era of scientific enlightenment.
These suppositions have only been amplified by the enduring works of such zoological pioneers as Swedish historian Olaus Magnus, Norwegian bishop Erik Pontoppidan and Roman naturalist Pliny The Elder, who compiled massive amounts of information regarding animals of all types, some of which have been confirmed to exist… and others which seem perpetually banished into the shadowy realm of legend.
Still, there are some researchers who believe that at least a handful of these myths are based upon genuine, biological life forms. That this world was once rife with creatures almost unimaginable in this day and age, and the the myths and legends that have been passed on from generation to generation represent a sort of oral zoological record, a direct link between the bizarre fauna that once shared the Earth with our ancestors and modern humans.
In support of this theory there exists some fascinating eyewitness reports, which seem to indicate that a few of these legends may not have been based solely on bravado, poetic musings or inaccurate observations. While some of these creatures are the obvious physical manifestations of naturally occurring phenomenon or a corporeal interpretation of a moral allegory, there are some which appear to be very real historical accounts of encounters with what must be considered ro be genuine biological entities.
Although many of these animals could easily fit under the headings of other American Monsters, their association with these antiquated fables has forever linked them to the myths themselves. So the question remains… are any of these animals real?
Read on and decide for yourself.