Creatures Popping Up
Where They Don’t Belong
By James Donahue
Even nature is telling
us that things are going cock-eyed these days. Whether we can attribute it to global warming, or a shift in thought that is
twisting the roots of reality, it is getting hard to explain some of the stories that are popping up in our news so frequently
they almost lose the appearance of oddities.
David Stepp was recently
fishing for catfish on the Ohio
River when he snagged a relatively large octopus. The thing, which was dead, measured six feet from the tip of
one tentacle to the other. It was about three and a half feet high. While some creatures like boas and alligators are sometimes
dropped off after being kept as exotic pets, nobody thinks anybody would keep an octopus in a home fish tank . . . especially
until he got as large as this one.
Remember the whale that
got stranded last year in the Thames River,
near London? This 18-foot-long salt water mammal, a northern
bottle-nosed whale, was so far out of place naturalists have had trouble figuring out it got where it was. And in spite of
a dramatic effort to rescues the creature, the whale died while being transported on a barge toward the sea.
Another anomaly off the
English coast was reported by fisherman Peter Dent, who caught a six-foot-long swordfish in his salmon net . The swordfish,
believed to be about 2,000 to 3,000 miles north of its regular habitat in the Mediterranean, was apprehended in the cold seas
off the coast of Britain. Have the waters
of the ocean heated that much?
We may already have explained
that alligator found in a golf course lake in Scottsdale, Arizona.
The creature, measuring 34 inches long, and about three and a half years old, was safely captured and returned to its natural
habitat. It is believed to have been kept as a pet when young and small, and then released into the lake when it got too big
to handle. Yet an alligator in Arizona is something to talk
Residents around North Derbyshire and South Yorkshire, England, are reporting sightings of a large black cat that has
been frightening them out of their wits. They say this thing is black, possibly a puma, what has been spotted in trees or
just moving across the landscape. One report said the animal is about four feet long, has a football shaped face, and brilliant
green eyes. The thing has been dubbed the Beast of Bradway. To date, nobody has identified it.
Then we must add this
strange story about a University of Central
Florida researcher who has apparently been captured and drowned by a large sea turtle he was attempting
to tag. Boyd Lyon, 37, was working with a team of zoologists just off the coast
when the turtle attached itself to him and pulled him into the water. He never resurfaced. The Coast Guard has been searching
but to date, Lyon remains missing.