Bites at Animal Planet

20 May

A Moment in Monster History: The East River Monster

New York City doesn’t invoke visions of exotic creatures or wild animals (unless you count the big rats you find in the subway).

But two years ago, the Big Apple caught the attention of everyone, including scientists, when a bloated animal carcass washed up on the shores of the East River, near the Brooklyn Bridge. The creature, dubbed the East River Monster, was unlike anything anyone had ever seen (outside of the nearby Montauk Monster).

What could the East River Monster be? (Photo Credit: Denise Ginley)

With its hairless skin, distinct mouth, tiny eyes and stubby legs, the East River Monster opened a debate to an array of guesses. According to the New York Post, a NYC Parks Department official said it was a cooked pig. Others believed it might be some sort of rodent or raccoon, while a Cornell University professor said it was likely a small dog that bloated during the decaying process.

Even our very own Jeremy Wade weighed in, telling Gawker that it wasn’t a fish, but probably some kind of rodent.

Whatever it was, there’s no denying that East River Monster is one of most intriguing animal mysteries in recent history.

How does the East River Monster match up to other rodents, or even the North American beasts featured on River Monsters? And what do you think the East River Monster could be?

What else is out there? Monster Week continues all this week at 8PM EP!

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