International Sea Serpent Reports
ANOTHER SEA MONSTER
Discovery At Port Said
Barrier Miner (Broken Hill, NSW)
Date: April 7, 1934
Page Number: 3
CAIRO, April 6.—A Port Said fisherman has discovered a dead sea monster, over 48ft. long, weighing 15 tons. Fifteen fishermen failed to move the carcase, which was then covered with sand to assist decomposition.
Later the skeleton will be transferred to the Cairo Zoo.
There have been several recent reports of sea serpents and similar monsters. At the end of February a strange marine monster, 25ft. long, was found dead on the rocks near Cherbourg, France.
The beast had a long neck and a head resembling that of a camel. It had the appearance of a stout serpent with two pectoral and one dorsal fins.
The middle part of the body was about 12ft. in circumference and partly covered with grey hair.
Early in February a "shiny black" sea serpent, with a head measuring 2ft. across, and a body 65ft. long, was claimed to have been seen by two officers of the Cunard liner Mauretania while cruising in the Caribbean Sea. An entry in the liner's log supported their story. "About 45ft. of the body could be seen in curves on the surface, and, judged by the commotion there was another 20ft. below," portion of it read.
The Loch Noss monster is also fresh in the public memory.
Supposed Lock Ness Monster
Recorder (Port Pirie, SA)
Date: April 20, 1934
Page Number: 3
SEAFARING men will take heart again to tell of unusual things noticed at sea, now that some color has been lent to the story of a monster in Loch Ness, Scotland.
Apparently there is much to be ascertained about the creatures of the sea. One, the body of which was cast up on the beach at Cherbourg, France, recently may have been the mysterious visitant of Loch Ness, which created alarm for weeks.
Did the sea-monster now lying dead on the beach at Querqueville, near Cherbourg, come from Loch Ness? "It is not impossible that he did!," says Prof. Petit, a British Museum expert who has just examined the carcase.
According to the professor the monster is "of a primitive type" and seems to be some kind of shark. "The creature," Prof. Petit says, "is neither a mammal, as was at first supposed, nor a cetacean, but a member of that vast category of cartlaginous fish to which the shark belongs."
The condition of the carcase, which is incomplete and has been in parts washed away by the tides, makes more precise identification difficult, but the professor has arrived at his conclusions after an examination of the viscera, the head, and the fins.
More detailed examination in the laboratory, he states, will be necessary before any precise fixing of its species can be made.
It appears that the length and narrowness of the creature's neck, together with the shape of its head, which resembles that of a camel, constitute abnormalities which the professor finds it hard to classify.
The owner of a tug, who claims that he twice saw the creature alive, declares that he saw its head raised to a height of about 3 ft. above the water.
Other sources list Dr. Georges Petit as from the Paris Museum which would seem more likely:
Chronicle (Adelaide, SA)
Date: April 26, 1934
Page Number: 32
Europe has been stirred by reports of the discovery of another monster, this time at Cherbourg, the French seaport, from which the mailboats for the United States leave. This time the reports have been verified by photographs. Picture shows the "monster" dead on the beach. It is 25 feet long and 6 feet in diameter. What it is nobody knows. — Times.
And Other Monsters.
By Captain T. W. Arthur
The Sydney Morning Herald (NSW)
Date: April 28, 1934
Page Number: 10
In a recent cable from Paris it was noted that a mysterious deep-sea monster, 25 feet long, of a blue-grey colour, with two fins on its sides, and one on the back, with a small head on a neck three feet long belonging to a hitherto unknown genus had been washed up on the beach near Cherbourg, at a small place named Querquevllle, in the English Channel, 98 miles from Southampton, and near Cape De La Hogue. The body was to be examined by scientists. It will be interesting to watch developments in this case, as it may clear up one or two points in connection with sea monsters.
LOCH NESS RIVAL 'MONSTER" IN FRANCE
Supposed Young Whale
The Canberra Times (ACT)
Date: May 8, 1934
Page Number: 3
From the description recently made available of a marine "monster" stranded at Querqueville, near Cherbourg, it seems that imagination in France has been just as lively as it was recently at Loch Ness. Evidence points to its being merely the badly decomposed and mutilated body of a young whale.
Old sailors who viewed the stranded carcase declared that it was that of a sea-serpent, such as they claimed to have seen on some of their voyages. Naturalists have been rather more sceptical.
The "monster" of Loch Ness was only claimed to have been seen for a minute or so at a time. But this "monster" of Querqueville still reposed on its bed of rock and sand ready for the investigation of any biologists whose curiosity is sufficiently strong to drive them to carry out their work in an atmosphere which really calls for gas-masks.
Professor Bourdelle, of the Cherbourg Natural History Museum, on seeing photographs of the creature, expressed the opinion that it was a young whale. It was admittedly in an advanced stage of decomposition when it was washedashore, and this in the professor's view, accounted for the impression of some of those who saw it that it had a long neck and a small, camel-like head.
The body had obviously drifted for a long time in the sea. lt had been partly eaten by sea birds, and time and tide had also played their part in rendering it almost unrecognisable.
Edward Sicaire Bourdelle
(1876 - 1960)
French veterinarian and zoologist.
WHALE, SHARK, OR SEAL?
Barrier Miner (Broken Hill, NSW)
Date: June 20, 1934
Page Number: 8
Not one so for has been able to identify the type of the monster the carcase of which was found on a rocky shore about three miles from here, says: the London "Daily Mail's" Cherbourg correspondent.
Everyone is asking whether it is similar to the Loch Ness monster.
I have seen the Cherbourg animal, which was found by fishermen while they were gathering seaweed on the rocks at low tide, and it was in an advanced state of decomposition.
According to the fisherfolk, who are best able to judge such questions, the carcase had been tossed about by the waves for from three to four weeks.
A medical man who exmalned the remains expressed the opinion that, of whatever type the animal might be, it was a female.
COARSE WHITE HAIR
Its general aspect is that of a whale, but it has a neck almost four feet long, very much resembling that of a gigantic tortoise.
The tail has a sharp outline like that of a mackerel. The large dorsal fin looks very much like a hump, and the two other fins like those of a whale or large seal. There are no feet.
The creature is distinguished from the fish tribe by the fact that the belly, the underside of the fins (not the dorsal fin), and the lower half of the tail are covered by a sort of coarse white hair very much of the thickness and texture of elephant hair.
One school of scientific opinion considers the monster to be a survival of some prehistoric species, while another holds that it belongs perhaps remotely to the whale family.
- Corbiere, professor of natural science, who made a close examination of the animal, said:
"My opinion is that it is a very rare specimen of sea animal. It must have been of a much greater diameter than it appeared when found.
"It is a great pity that the head, which looks very much like that of a camel, was smashed so that it is difficult to determine what was its original shape.
"One thing is certain, and that is that this monstrous animal is the first seen in this part of the world.
"Risking a hypothesis, I should say it is a kind of hyperoodon (beaked whale) an animal which is found in the North Atlantic and which whalers always seek."
Cherbourg fishermen say they saw a strange animal at sea about a fort- night ago, some 20 miles from Cherbourg Roads.
The picture of the Cherbourg monster secured by the "Daily Mail" was shown to several British authorities on zoology and roused the keenest interest.
The following are some comments.
Dr. Burgess Barnett, curator of reptiles at the London Zoo: This is certainly no reptile. I should say it is a small whale of the species known as true whales. The hair probably comes from the mouth, where it is natural to find hair in whales.
Mr. M. A. C. Hinton, deputy keeper of zoology, Natural History Museum, South Kensington: From a preliminary examination I am inclined to think the monster is a large seal. Seals of such size are generally found in Antarctic waters. I have, however, not seen a photograph of one quite so big.
This one might have been caught alive in the Antarctic for exhibition purposes, and, having died in captivity, been thrown overboard.
Dr. W. T. Calman, keeper of zoology, Natural History Museum: The creature very much resembles a basking shark. The shark is the only thing of its kind which grows to such a size in this part of the world.
Beaked whales are one of the least known groups of mammals because of their deep-sea habitat, mysterious habits, and apparent low abundance.
Whale blubber is fibrous, and when exposed, looks very much like hair.