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Thursday, September 21, 2023

A Look at Some Florida Cryptids

Florida is known for its diverse wildlife and ecosystems, but it’s also home to a number of cryptids and other mysterious creatures, most of which have yet to be proven. The state has more than 26,000 square miles of forests, covering about half of the state's land area. Florida also has more than 500 nonnative animal species and 1,000 nonnative insects found throughout the state.

Here are some of the cryptids that are said to inhabit Florida:
Skunk Ape: Also known as the Florida Bigfoot, Stink Ape, and Swampsquatch, the Skunk Ape is a small humanoid creature that is known to inhabit parts of the southeastern United States. The first official reports of this small bipedal creature are from all the way back in 1818 in an area now known as Apalachicola, Florida, according to sources.

The Skunk Ape, also known as the Florida Bigfoot, is a large and hairy human-like creature purported to inhabit the forests and swamps in the southeastern United States, most notably in Florida. It is often compared to, synonymous with, or called the “cousin” of Bigfoot, a prominent subject within North American popular culture.

The Skunk Ape is commonly described as a bipedal human or ape-like creature, approximately 5–7 feet tall, and covered in mottled reddish-brown hair. The Skunk Ape is often reported to be smaller in stature compared to traditional descriptions of Bigfoot from the northern United States and Canada1. It is named for its foul odor, often described as being similar to a skunk.

Contemporary descriptions of the Skunk Ape in Florida, Georgia, and Alabama folklore have occurred since European settlers first occupied the region. In 1818, local newspapers reported a story from what is now Apalachicola, Florida, that spoke of a “man-sized monkey” raiding food stores and stalking fishermen along the shore.

Many articles have been presented in an attempt to prove the Skunk Ape’s existence, including anecdotal sightings, disputed photographs, audio and video recordings, and casts of large footprints. The majority of mainstream scientists have historically discounted the existence of the Skunk Ape, considering it to be the result of a combination of folklore, misidentification, and hoax, rather than a living animal.

Wampus Cat: The Wampus Cat is a cat-like cryptid in Appalachian and Native American folklore that varies in appearance, ranging from scary to silly, depending on the region.

The Wampus Cat is a creature from American folklore, particularly prevalent in the Southeastern United States. Its appearance varies widely depending on the region, ranging from frightful to comical. In East Tennessee, it is usually described as being four feet tall with a mesmerizing gaze.

Early references by the American Dialect Society noted the Wampus Cat as “a creature heard whining about camps at night,” “a spiritual green-eyed cat, having occult powers,” or "an undefined imaginary animal". Folklorist Vance Randolph described the Wampus Cat as "a kind of amphibious panther which leaps into the water and swims like a colossal mink".

In Cherokee legends, the monster is the cat-like embodiment of a female onlooker cursed by tribal elders, as punishment for hiding beneath the pelt of a wild cat to witness a sacred ceremony. The Wampus Cat is used as a mascot for several educational institutions.

During the 1920–30s, newspapers reported a “Wampus” cat killing livestock in North Carolina to Georgia. Though possibly due to early intrusions of coyotes or jaguarundi, the livestock deaths were attributed to the Wampus Cat.

Eyewitnesses describe the Wampus Cat as a large and fearsome creature with a bobcat’s face, often portrayed as a cross between a cat and a human, with sharp, elongated claws and fangs. Its most distinctive feature is its glowing, yellow eyes that supposedly pierce through the darkness of the night as it roams the Appalachian Mountains.

Sanibel Sea Serpent: In 2014, reports began to surface of a sea serpent in the waters off Sanibel Island. The couple that recorded the video of the monster described it as having the face of a sea otter and the body of a gigantic snake. Check out the video by clicking Here.

Dogman: Sighted all throughout the Americas, the Dogman can be thought of as a relative of the werewolf family. With large bodies and the head and legs of a dog, this cryptid is capable of leaving anyone who encounters it scarred for life.

©TCC Research
Snoligoster: The Snoligoster, known by some as the fearsome critter, is an extremely strange amphibious creature that comes from lumberjack folklore.
It’s described as a legless gator that moves using a rudder on the end of its tail and impales animals on its back spike. It’s from the book Fearsome Critters of the Lumberwoods. Please note that cryptids are creatures whose existence is yet to be proven, and their descriptions are often based on folklore and personal accounts.

Muck Monster: This is another cryptid believed to be prowling around Florida.
The Muck Monster is a cryptid that is unique because no one has ever claimed to see it. It is known to cause a massive break in the waters of Worth Lagoon. Many people believe that what lurks just below the surface is something that resembles a dinosaur or large aquatic lizard. There are also stories of a monster residing in Kirby Lake, also known as The Muck, in Belfast, located on the corner of Miller Street and Lincolnville Avenue. Some believe the creature could be a giant eel.

Please note that cryptids are creatures whose existence is yet to be proven, or accepted, and their descriptions are often based on folklore and personal accounts. The descriptions can sometimes vary greatly. 

Giant Hogs, Sea Devils, Mega-Alligators, and Giant Boa Constrictors: These are some of the other cryptids reported to live in Florida. We know that Boa Constrictors can get very large and may grow even larger in Florida. 

Hope you enjoyed this short article.


This post by Thomas Marcum, Thomas is the founder/leader of the cryptozoology and paranormal research organization known as The Crypto Crew. Over 25 years of experience with research and investigation of unexplained activity, working with video and websites. A trained wild land firefighter, a published photographer, and a poet.

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