Long the envy of the world for its famous water creature, Scotland is now in direct competition with another country for the attention of internet conspiracy theorists and cable supernatural reality shows alike after China debuted its very own take on the Loch Ness Monster. A video, posted on Sina Weibo last Friday, shows the strange beast snaking through the Yangtze River and into the hearts of a world hungry for the emergence of the next cryptid superstar.
As the mirror clip posted on YouTube shows, the video follows a dark shape as it moves through the water like a big, nasty ol’ eel, undulating its body in view of observers gathered to watch from a stretch of the river in Yichang, Hubei near the Three Gorges Dam. While all of us still able to feel wonder at the mysteries inherent to our universe know that this is either a newly thawed-out dinosaur, traveler from a parallel alien dimension, or a demonic visitor from the depths of hell, the BBC’s Kerry Allen has rounded up a few other, far less likely theories as to what the video shows.
A Huazhong Agricultural University professor has speculated that Nessie 2.0 is actually a (large) water snake while others, like a biologist interviewed by China’s The Paper, was quoted by the BBC as saying it’s just “a floating object.” This has been accompanied by photos of rubbery garbage lying on rocks and, as Forbes reports, Chinese news site CCTV explaining that some loose mesh from a nearby ferry terminal is responsible. These stories have also cited a local worker who claims to have shot the video as a joke.
As plausible as these explanations are, they’re not nearly as much fun as the theories from social media that speculate the creature is some pollution-grown giant sea snake. We imagine, too, that the video may show Nessie itself on vacation far away from her usual range in Loch Ness, stretching her fins after decades spent trapped in a single lake. Monster wanderlust, after all, is much more likely than a bunch of garbage floating in a notoriously polluted river.
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