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Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Decemystery (2020) 9: Nepalese Dragon

Dragons are really diverse creatures of legend. There are good dragons, bad dragons, dragons with wings, dragons without wings, big dragons, and little dragons. Some of these dragons can breathe fire, while others breathe ice. In some stories, they can also breathe lightning! I’ve also heard of some that bring life and hope, while others bring death and misery.

Dragons are super cool in that regard and I believe that if I were a dragon, I’d live in a cave and never leave it, instead devoting my time to sleeping and stomping on anyone who got within a 35,000 mile radius of my hidey spot.

I guess that makes me one of the bad dragons then, but who cares. Today’s story has to do with a dragon that can’t fly, barely moves, yet is said to reside in the forests of Nepal. It’s never been found in spite of it being really slow. It goes by two names, but I’m going to use the first name I saw for it: the Nepalese Dragon.

The Story

Also known as the “limbless dragon”, this creature is apparently not the most widely recognized cryptid on the block. I originally learned about it in Michael Newton’s “Encyclopedia of Cryptozoology”. I’ve mentioned it before on this blog and if you’re a fan of cryptids and you haven’t gotten yourself a copy, I’d say it’s worth it! It has a nice array of weird creatures from around the globe.

Anyways, the Nepalese Dragon was first seen in 1980. When exactly, I don’t know. Neither the aforementioned book, nor the two sources I could find that refer to this creature as the “Limbless Dragon”—cryptid-tidbits and a blog run by cryptozoologist Karl Shuker—provided a specific date. Only that it was in 1980. So for all we know, it was Christmas Day when this happened.

What exactly was “this”? Well, it was an encounter that surely left a Reverend by the name of Resham Poudal with quite a story to tell. An Indian missionary, Poudal and a few others were going through the Himalayan jungles when they opted to set up camp for the night. Their campsite was near a fairly big log—and I do mean big. One could almost say that a log that was roughly 40 feet (12.1 meters) in length is a little bit strange, but I don’t know how large the trees in that particular jungle get.

Anyways, after sleeping for the night, the group awoke to notice something strange. The log they were camping near was quite literally inching its way towards who-knows-where. No, that isn’t hyperbole either, this creature was literally moving so slowly that it was clearing inches in what I can only assume to be was hours. This comes courtesy of locals who later stated that this creature moves only 1 to 2 feet (0.3 to 0.6 meters) per day. Slow and steady wins the race!

It was also at this point that—as you can see in the header image—the group noticed that the creature’s mouth was absolutely massive. Reportedly, when open as wide as it could be, a 6-and-a-half-foot-tall (1.9-meter-tall) human could stand upright in them. This is reminiscent of how large a Megalodon’s jaw was actually and I’m surprised nobody mentions it since it seems a bit oddly specific. Don’t worry though, I doubt the two are related—this creature sure as heck moves a lot slower than a Megalodon used to.

Poudal and his entourage were later informed by locals that this creature was known to locals to be a dragon. Reportedly, the creature would lure prey to it with its glowing eyes (keep this in mind for later). Once the prey was near—which the blog run by Shuker claims is said to be water buffalo—the creature will slam its jaws down and enjoy a tasty meal.

Now, I want to pause here for a moment because this next part really bothers me. You see: had that been where the information on this creature’s means of consuming food ended, I would honestly think that this creature was a perfectly realistic cryptid. The jungles of our planet are, in my eyes, the perfect place for mysterious creatures to reside. The Nepalese Dragon is something that I can see being maybe a new type of snake or a crocodile. I mean, it’s nothing fantastical; it doesn’t fly, it doesn’t breathe fire, and while it’s said that it can camouflage (it was said to be a greenish-brown color and looked like a log), that’s a trait held by numerous other animals.

However, within the pages of Michael Newton’s book, it’s said Poudal was informed to never go in front of the monster. Okay, fair enough. It has massive jaws and who knows, maybe it’s faster than it looks.

Except, no. That isn’t the case. According to cryptozoologist Bill Gibbons—who Shuker cited in his blog—the creature is apparently capable of performing inhaling powerfully to pull in its prey. That’s right, the Nepalese Dragon isn’t a dragon at all. Instead, it’s the all new 2020 Draconic Vacuum, new from Hoover™! Order yours now; those dust mites will never be the same again once the 40+ foot long killing machine from the jungles of Nepal is done with them!

Chomp-freakin’-chomp goes the massive jaws of this beast; oh that stained carpet will be clean as can be once it’s been cleaned by the stomach acid and intestinal passages of this Supreme Ultimate Deluxe vacuum.

Seriously though, for whatever reason, Shuker and Cryptid Tidbits both fail to mention this, so I’m unsure if Newton got this wrong or if the aforementioned two other sources simply failed to mention it because it sounds absolutely ridiculous. Either way, it’s something that Gibbons apparently got information on, so who knows who got it wrong.

Whatever the case may be, that’s where the story of this cryptid ends. It’s one of the most perplexing stories out there for one simple reason and because of that, I once again have to come to terms with how absolutely batty the world of Cryptozoology truly is. So what exactly is the truth to this beast? Well, let’s dive into the theories section and find out for ourselves.


1. It was made up

Starting our theories off, we have the idea that the entire thing was made up; it was all hoopla and tomfoolery!

There have been countless stories throughout the ages made from tourists, explorers, and others who have gone to exotic or largely unexplored locations who have come back and told of fantastical things that are later proven to be fabrications. Whether the original teller confessed to making it up or it’s proven by another explorer who proves that the location[s] house nothing that the original explorer claimed they did varies from story to story. In this case, given that there doesn’t appear to be a precise location, I doubt anyone can really debunk it unless they went to the jungles of Nepal and did a massive sweep of the area in hopes of finding this massive fiend.

2. It was a dragon

The second theory is that the creature was really a dragon. Fus ro dah!

Stories of dragons have existed for over 1,000 years and even today, some claim to have seen them. Typically, they reside in either remote or mountainous regions, hidden away from the hustle and bustle of literally any place where humans live. In the case of this creature, it would have been what I can safely say is a very odd, very bizarre looking dragon that I’ve never seen describe. While I have heard of legless dragons—you needn’t look further than Chinese legends to see those described—I have never heard of one that moves this little and acts as a massive vacuum.

In spite of that, I can’t say this theory isn’t complete nonsense. In the future, I will go over accounts of people who have allegedly encountered real life dragons. Until that day, let this story act as something of a teaser. Just don’t think it represents the majority of them. You would be very wrong.

3. It was a gargantuan snake

Theory three posits that the creature was a snake. While I’ve personally never heard of a snake that’s capable of performing the inhalation-type feat that this cryptid is said to be capable of doing, its general appearance is relatively close to a snake. The trait of glowing eyes is something that’s known to be used by large snakes such as Anacondas—something that I didn’t know until I was researching this story.

At the same time, it’s also ridiculously slow and most snakes, as far as I’m aware, are anything but slow. So make of that what you will. Given the innumerable reports of massive snakes around the world, this theory is probably the most likely if we were to go off of simple looks and similar traits.

4. It was a massive crocodile

Our fourth theory is that the creature was a crocodile—or at least some sort of offshoot of a crocodile. Once more, I cannot find anything stating that crocodiles are capable of inhaling their prey, though the drawing used as the header for this write-up does at least look a teensy bit like a crocodile. All you have to do is remove the legs!

This theory has some sort of popularity it would seem—likely due to the numerous other crocodile-esque cryptids that are said to reside around the globe. There’s also how crocodiles are generally about as draconian in appearance as one can get. However, the likelihood of it actually being one… I actually don’t know. I’ve personally never heard of a legless crocodile in my life and the thought of such ferocious creatures being so slow is a bit oddballish if you ask me. Still, it’s possible (in my eyes at least).

5. It was a huge lizard

The fifth theory is that the creature was simply a very large lizard—one that had evolved to live without legs. In other words, it would’ve been a snake without being a snake. Nothing more, nothing less.

6. It was an entirely new species of animal

The sixth and final theory is that the creature was something entirely new. While this may seem rather fantastical, the sucking power of this creature is unlike anything I’ve ever heard. At least, in the way of sucking everything in front of it like its mouth is a black hole of some sort. Because of that, I would almost be inclined to say that it’s something entirely new, though its appearance is so much like a snake or crocodile that I have a hard time saying that.

My Take

I firmly believe that this so-called dragon is—or was—a large snake. I’ve personally always thought it was probable that there exists a massive snake (perhaps a remnant of the Titanoboa) living out somewhere in the Amazon or elsewhere. In this case, while I think the sheer size of the beast is likely exaggerated—perhaps due to false memories or simply wanting to embellish it—I don’t believe it to be an impossibility or even improbability.

If you want to understand more as to why, I recommend you look up the plethora of reports of people encountering massive snakes in remote regions of the world. Anacondas are generally the prime candidates for a large snake, though they aren’t prone to inhaling their prey. They’re constrictors, not Hoover vacuums. On the other hand, the glowing eyes aspect is a bit too specific and coincidental for me.

I think that if this creature did exist, it’s likely a new species of snake. Though realistically, I believe it’s slim that it even existed. The only reason I think it exists is it’s honestly way too strange to have been made up without some form of inspiration.


The Nepalese Dragon is certainly something else; a creature that inhales its prey, barely moves, yet has remained hidden from the public eye. So to close out this story, I would love to know: do you think this creature is (or was) real? Tell me in the comments below because I seriously want to know what someone makes of this bizarre story. So until tomorrow, stay safe and stay out of the way of giant Hoover vacuums that are 40+ feet in length.

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