AHUIZOTL: (CENTRAL AMERICA)

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aquatic-enigmasStories of vicious, man eating, aquatic-primates have terrorized the fishermen of Central America for generations.

These strange, lake dwelling creatures were first reported by the Aztec people of Central America in the later portion of the 13th century. Described as being a simian-like animal, which harbored some distinctly canine characteristics, there can be no doubt the Ahuizotl’s most unique attribute was the hand-like appendage, which was reportedly attached to the base of its tail.

Dreaded by fishermen of the area, the Ahuizotl was renowned for its voracious appetite and love of human flesh, showing a particular fondness for the so-called “crunchy parts” such as the fingernails and teeth. That having been said, the animal was also known to delight in the more yielding delicacy of the human eyeball. The Ahuizotl has also been accused of resorting to making cries akin to that of a human baby in order to lure its prey.

Known as a guardian of lakes, ancient Aztecs believed that the Ahuizotl’s primary function was to protect the fish therein. This task made it a natural adversary to fishermen, whose primary source of sustenance was rich aquatic stock of their homeland.

Legends quickly sprang up in the fishing villages of the area regarding the Ahuizotl’s attempts to sink any boat found fishing near its aquatic home. These fishermen attempted to quell this sub-aquatic predator by offering back portions of their catch. This effort met with only a modicum of success.

As if the fishermen’s situation weren’t dire enough, it would seem that people on land were no safer than those on boats. It soon became apparent that the animal would not hesitate to use its claw-like tail to grasp at the ankles of those unsuspecting men, women and children who stood too close to the edge of the water. In this fashion, more than one unwary traveler was snatched from their dry perch and plunged into the churning depths to await their horrific fate. The next day the corpse of the Ahuizotl’s victim would wash ashore, usually missing their fingernails, eyes and teeth.