Looks like a fox, Eats like a snake: The Guirivulu

Article by Rebecca
Image by Will Hobbs (www.sirwilliamwesley.com)

Occasionally I stumble across a creature that I want to discuss that but find very little information about it. Case in point, this month’s creature the guirivulu.

The guirivulu is a creature of folklore from South America, particularly Chile. It is generally described as having the body of a puma with the head of a fox. At the end of its tail is a large claw. The guirivulu lives in the deepest pools and rivers it can find. From there it is known to attack animals and humans alike. When it attacks, its giant mouth swallows the victim whole. As it goes down, the guirivulu’s body expands like a snake’s to accommodate its meal. For this reason it is sometimes known as the fox-snake, not to be confused with the two species of non-venomous rat snake, the eastern fox snake and the western fox snake.

That’s really about it. So why even mention it? Why not write about something that I could fill pages up with, like the Loch Ness Monster? (Or Champy for my Upstate New York peeps!) Why the guirivulu and its little blurb?

It is a matter of introduction. Sure, we all believe in fantastical creatures of our persuasion, for most of us that translates to dragons, unicorns, griffons, and the sort. For most of us, the idea of our personal mythologies including creatures that have a body like a puma, a head like a fox, and a tail with a giant claw that devours its victims like a snake would seems out of the question. Ridiculous. Now you know it’s out there. Some culture already went there and now thanks to reading that little blurb it’s yours now too.

Perhaps one of you will write the continuing story of the guirivulu for me to enjoy.