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

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Flying Creatures - Strange birds. Part 2.


Patagonian Pterosaurs.

Another fantastic flying creature was reported at Lake Nahuel Huapi which may also belong to the same group, despite being classified as a pterosaur (Yes, the purported home of a “plesiosaur” -Nahuelito- is also said to be home to an extinct flying reptile).


The Lost World . From [7]

According to German investigator Ulrich Dunkel, two hunters named Shirdos and Milacsek in the late XIXth century shot a flying reptile at Nahuel Huapi. It had leathery skin and looked like a pelican. The animal was retrieved and sent to a Museum at Santiago, Chile, but somehow got lost.

Dunkel believed it to be a Pterosaurus though German zoologist Hans Krieg who read the report classified the animal as a Flying Steamer Duck (Tachyeres patachonicus), which is found all over Patagonia –this bird is quite unlike a pelican,[1][2][3] nor is it like a flying reptile –it has feathers. Furthermore all pterosaurs became extinct with the dinosaurs, 65 Ma.

The story may be apocryphal as we have not found any other reference to these two hunters in any published work.


There is however a myth which explains the bitter Patagonian winds as being created by an enormous and mysterious creature resembling a cross between an eagle and a fish. This bird is the size of a Mapuche hut and its body is covered with shiny scales instead of feathers, it is known as the Fürüfühué.[4][5] Scales are a definitively reptilian feature, which it also shares with the Copiapó “bird”. Fürüfühué is seldom seen, but its song is heard at a great distance “even in the whole world”.[6]

Part 1 of Strange Birds is Here.
Part 3 of Srtange Birds is Here.


[1] Dunkel, U., (1961). Abenteuer mit Seeschlangen. Stuttgart: Kreuz-Verlag.
[2] Krieg, H., (1940). Als Zoologe in Steppen und Waldern Patagoniens. Munich: J.F. Lehmann.
[3] Eberhart, G., (2002). Op. Cit. pp. 365.
[4] Noticias de Antropología y Arqueología, (2002). El Diccionario de Mitos y Leyendas.
[5] Batic, L. Op. Cit. pp 54.
[6] Alvarez, G., (1969). Op. Cit. pp 303.
[7] Conan Doyle, Arthur. The Lost World. Illustrations from the Strand Magazine installments of The Lost World, 1912.

Copyright 2009 by Austin Whittall ©

Patagonian Monsters

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