The Loch Ness Monster has been one of the most popular mythical creatures that many people across the world believe in. The creature came from the Scottish folklore which is said to inhabit in the Scottish Highlands. According to reports, the Loch Ness Monster was first seen in the 1870s and was described as “large in size with a long neck and one or more humps protruding from the water.” Past theories as to what the monster is included seals, sharks, sturgeon, catfish, and many more.
|The Loch Ness Monster / Photo by: Keystone and Getty Images via Independent|
There have been several reports of sightings of the Loch Ness Monster. On July 22, 1933, a man named George Spicer reported seeing “a most extraordinary form of animal.” According to him, the creature was around 25ft long and 4ft high, with a large body and long neck. Two more sightings were reported the following year. This is when the most famous photograph of the Loch Ness Monster was taken by Colonel Robert Wilson, a respected British surgeon.
|Finding the monster / Photo by: Getty Images via Independent|
However, a recent study might explain what kind of creature it is. Researchers from New Zealand have categorized all living species in the loch by extracting DNA from water samples. The Independent, a British online newspaper, they analyzed about 250 water samples and found out that there is no evidence of a giant catfish, shark, or living relic that has existed in a prehistoric era. However, they discovered that the DNA from eels was abundant in the Loch Ness. Professor Neil Gemmell, a geneticist from the University of Otago said, “There is a very significant amount of eel DNA. Eels are very plentiful in Loch Ness, with eel DNA found at pretty much every location sampled. There are a lot of them."
This suggested that giant specimens could be living in the loch and that these eels have been mistaken for the mythical monster. But are they giant? According to Gemmell, their data doesn’t show the size of the eels but it is possible that there may be giant eels. “Whether they are as big as around 4m as some of these sightings suggest – well, as a geneticist I think about mutations and natural variation a lot, and while an eel that big would be well outside the normal range, it seems not impossible that something could grow to such an unusual size,” he said.
|The monster "spotted" on Apple Maps / Photo by: Apple Maps via Independent|