Lake monster terrifies villagers in Ukraine

A huge monster with the head of a serpent and the body of a crocodile is rumored to lurk at the bottom of a lake in Western Ukraine. The monster has been frightening residents of a nearby village for more than one hundred years. Now and again the gruesome creature comes ashore and attacks domestic animals. At times it harms humans too. As a rule, locals steer clear of the lake. Researchers keep gathering information in an attempt to unravel the lake mystery.

Quite a few bloodcurdling stories about the monster of the lake circulate through the village. It is said to attack animals and humans. The hideous monster is also said to moan and wheeze at night. The local elderly say that the “lizard” was last seen on the lake shore some 30 years ago.

“The monster assaulted Stepan, a groom. He was tending horses near the lake on that day. Actually, Stepan had too much of a drink so he stretched himself out on the grass and fell asleep. A crocodile-like creature crept on to the bank out of the water, moved up to the guy, and sniffed at him. Mushroom pickers came from the wood at the very moment. They saw that thing and started shouting out loud to scare it off. The monster reportedly opened its month and there wasn’t a single tooth inside,” said the 84-year-old Ivan Kovalchuk, a resident of the village.

It is believed that the first stories about the monster hiding in Lake Somin near the village of Lukiv appeared at the turn of the 19th century. The reference to the monster can be found in a report sent by a village chairman to Warsaw. He wrote that the villagers had not paid a tax on fishing because of a “serpent” which lived in the lake, eating the fishes. The unknown predator also harassed the livestock and locals, said the letter. The authorities had plans to dispatch an expedition to the area to investigate the case. But those plans fell through due the outbreak of World War I.

The German military made an attempt to solve the mystery of Lake Somin during World War II. The Germans used diving equipment and nets for exploring the bottom of the lake. However, their efforts to capture the creature ended in failure, reports Gazeta Po-ukrainski.

Some researchers believe that the lake monster is a huge cat fish. Lots of cat fishes can be found in numerous lakes and ponds located in the area. “Cat fishes can use their big strong fins for dragging themselves ashore. Several cat fishes caught around here were really big. They weighed about 100 kilos each, measuring up to two meters in length,” said Valentin Lyupa, a researcher of “the Somin Monster.”

Other scientists claim that the creature could be a prehistoric freshwater shark which somehow survived the Ice Age. “The archeological finds discovered in the area can back up this version. There’re many reports on fossilized teeth and bones of ancient fishes dug out by locals in their gardens,” said Valentin Volontai, an adviser with the Institute of Archeology under the Ukrainian Academy of Sciences.

Lake Somin is located in Polessie lowlands, which formed at the bottom of an ancient freshwater sea. About 300 lakes scattered around the area are the remainders of the sea. Those karst lakes interconnect by means of underground passages and rives.

Lake Somin is 56 meters deep. A number of karst caves lie at its bottom. That is where the monster lies in wait, according to locals. The Polish researchers are reportedly going to give it another try and solve the lake mystery. A special research party is expected to commence work on location in the near future.

Translated by Guerman Grachev

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Author`s name Dmitry Sudakov