Guide to Patagonia's Monsters & Mysterious beings

I have written a book on this intriguing subject which has just been published.
In this blog I will post excerpts and other interesting texts on this fascinating subject.

Austin Whittall

Monday, October 5, 2009


The "Grabbing lake monster" of Tierra del Fuego.

Lucas Bridges wrote about a monster feared by the Yagan natives, it lived in certain caves by bays and lakes. This being was known as Lakooma.

He knew about one that lived in a small lake close to his family’s ranch at Harberton in southern Tierra del Fuego Island.[1]

The natives said that those who ventured close to it ran the risk of being seized by it and dragged into the lake to be devoured by the creature.

Some described it as a "hand" that coming out of the water grabbed those who walked by.[2]



Bridges believed that the myth may have originated in whirlpools in the sea or thin ice in the lakes during winter, both of which drowned incautious natives;[1] but you would expect the natives who were experienced boat men that virtually lived in their canoes, to know about the eddies and treacherous currents. They would have also avoided frozen lakes when they trekked along the shore.

Lakooma is probably a surviving megafaunal creature that somehow lived on in Tierra del Fuego after the last Ice Age.


[1] Bridges, L., (2008). El último confín de la tierra. B. Aires: Editorial Sudamericana. pp. 160-1.
[2] Pessagno Espora, M., (1971). Los fueguinos. B. Aires: Secretaría General Naval, Departamento de Estudios Históricos Navales. pp. 127

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Patagonian Monsters - Cryptozoology, Myths & legends in Patagonia
2010 International Year of Biodiversity Copyright 2009-2010 by Austin Whittall © 

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